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Best Identity Theft Protection Services

Profile picture of Rob Douglas
by Rob Douglas

Identity Theft Protection Contributing Editor

Updated on 12/08/2017

The Information Age has made it easier than ever to accidentally divulge personal information or, more troublesome, to have it stolen. Identity theft protection companies help people monitor their financial accounts and personal information to ensure that their identity is secure.

Identity theft protection companies help consumers spot abnormal activity with their credit cards, bank accounts, social security information and more to repair and resolve issues regarding identity theft.

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    LifeLock
    Read 1957 Reviews

    With tiered pricing and service levels that include up to $1 million in identity recovery services, LifeLock is invested in ID theft prevention. Its app offers real-time updates, keeping users informed about identity threats.

    Credit Sesame
    Read 61 Reviews

    Credit Sesame is a credit and loan management company based in California. It offers a report card, charts to track your financial health over time, identity theft protection and more.

    Identity Guard
    Read 27 Reviews

    Identity Guard offers credit report updates and scores from all three credit bureaus. Identity Guard alerts subscribers when their social security numbers have been used and features helpful extras like identity theft insurance.

    IdentityForce
    Read 11 Reviews

    IdentityForce has been a trusted name in identity protection for more than 35 years, offering services to individuals, businesses and government agencies. Its comprehensive policies include protection for children and parents.

    TrustedID
    Read 17 Reviews

    TrustedID goes beyond identity protection by offering targeted prevention products. Using the company's services, consumers can search millions of public and private databases to determine their level of risk and vulnerability.

    ProtectMyID
    Read 20 Reviews

    ProtectMyID is an identity protection company backed by Experian, an industry leader in credit monitoring. ProtectMyID works through early alerts and personalized resolution methods to protect consumers from fraudulent purchases.

    AllClear ID
    Read 5 Reviews

    The AllClear ID Alert Network offers preventative care and insurance against identity theft. Through the company’s Customer Communication service, AllClear ID alerts customers directly at the first hint of ID fraud.

    ID Watchdog
    Read Reviews

    Offering live support and guaranteed resolution in the event of identity theft, ID Watchdog gives clients direct insight into their data management to prevent fraud. ID Watchdog offers 24/7 expert customer assistance.

    IDShield
    Read Reviews

    ID Shield offers complete and unlimited identity theft services to protect businesses, families and individuals for a flat monthly payment. Customers receive notifications, monthly updates and restoration services.

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    Profile picture of Rob Douglas
    Rob Douglas

    Identity Theft Protection Contributing Editor

    View Profile

    Rob Douglas is an information security consultant specializing in the investigation and prevention of identity theft and scams. Rob is one of the nation’s leading authorities on the use of social engineering, impersonation, fraud and pretext to steal personal information. For two decades, Rob has assisted the financial services sector, the telecommunications industry, the general business community, government and law enforcement agencies to better understand the scope and methodology of identity crimes through presentations, educational materials, auditing and consultation.

    Common questions about identity theft protection companies

    What monitoring services do identity protection companies offer?

    A person's identity is composed of a range of factors, including credit use, financial history, medical history and more. Identity theft protection companies offer a range of monitoring services that watch over different aspects of a person's identity to ensure it hasn't been altered or stolen.

    • Credit monitoring: Some identity theft protection companies monitor clients' credit reports and credit usage to ensure that their credit cards are not being used fraudulently.
    • SSN monitoring: Some identity theft protection companies monitor the usage of a person's social security number and notify the clients if anybody else attempts to use their numbers.
    • Comprehensive monitoring: Many identity theft protection companies offer comprehensive monitoring for many aspects of a person's identity, including their credit, SSN, finances, medical history and more.

    How do identity protection companies help clients resolve problems?

    When a person's identity is stolen, they often need assistance fixing the damage that has been done. Some identity theft protection programs offer aid to those who need to resolve their situations.

    • Personal agents: Many identity theft protection companies offer personal assistance to help reclaim a client’s identity and repair any damage done to it.
    • Service time: Fixing an identity theft problem is a tedious endeavor, and a company with a dedicated resolution service can decrease the time it takes to fix the situation.
    • Preventative services: For people who have had trouble with identity theft, many identity theft companies offer preventative services. Services include alerting clients to potential fraud on credit reports, removing a client’s name from any pre-screened credit card lists or removing clients from mailing lists to minimize the chance of identity problems.

    What are their insurance options?

    Identity theft protection companies often insure a person's identity. This insurance compensates clients should their identity be stolen.

    • Full identity theft insurance: Companies that offer full identity theft insurance will reimburse customers for the entire cost of repairing their identity.
    • Lost wallet protection: Lost wallet protection cancels and replaces stolen credit or debit cards and sometimes includes reimbursement for stolen cash.
    • Reimbursement limit: Consumers should make sure they are aware of any limitations on their insurance reimbursements. Some companies may only pay filing fees or insure lost wages only up to a specified amount.

    What are their report options?

    Identity theft protection companies can offer customers a range of reports. These reports give consumers firsthand knowledge of their financial situations and identity history.

    • Individual bureau credit reports: Identity theft protection companies can offer customers credit reports from one specific credit bureau so they can see their credit score, individual credit accounts and credit usage over time.
    • Comprehensive credit reports: If an identity theft protection company offers customers comprehensive credit reports, it can show them full reports from all three credit bureaus, in addition to a wide variety of financial information.
    • Online scan reports: Some identity theft protection companies review a number of online resources to monitor their client’s exposure. They will then compile any notable information into reports for their clients.

    What types of plans are available?

    There are many types of plans offered by individual identity theft protection companies, and customers have the option of choosing the plans best for them.

    • Basic plans: Basic plans involve standard monitoring practices. The identity protection company will alert the client if their identity is in danger of being compromised. These plans are usually limited in scope.
    • Premium services: Some identity protection companies offer premium services that have all the amenities of standard plans with additional perks such as comprehensive reports, one on one consultations, insurance options and more.
    • Custom plans: Some identity theft protection companies allow customers to choose the level of service they want and tailor a protection plan that suits their needs.

    How much does identity protection cost?

    Identity theft protection services are available to customers both for free and for a fee. These services will vary among providers, but as a general rule, more comprehensive services cost more money.

    • Free service: Free identity theft protection companies monitor things like credit reports and financial activities at no cost. However, the protection these companies offer is limited.
    • Standard service rates: Most companies charge about $10-$25 per month for basic services. Identity protection in this range usually includes stolen fund replacement, live support, identity restoration, credit monitoring and online monitoring.
    • Comprehensive service rates: For comprehensive services, consumers can expect to pay $25-$60 per month. These services include a full suite of features such as increased fund replacement, monthly tracking reports and more.

    What are the different types of identity theft protection companies?

    Credit monitoring companies

    Credit monitoring companies simply monitor a person's credit report for irregularities. These companies alert customers if their credit is under attack from fraudulent sources.

    Identity theft prevention companies

    Companies that engage in identity theft prevention monitor more than just credit. These companies use proactive strategies such as reducing their customers’ public exposure and monitoring black market websites for their customers’ information.

    Identity theft repair companies

    Customers who need help to repair identities that have been altered or stolen turn to identity theft repair companies. These companies specialize in helping people reclaim their identities and fix problems that have been caused by the identity theft.

    Full service identity theft companies

    Full service identity theft companies offer monitoring, identity repair, insurance services and more to their customers.

    Who needs identity theft protection?

    People who have had their identity stolen

    People who have previously had their identity stolen can depend on identity theft protection companies for help. Companies can help them repair the damage and take steps to prevent it from happening again.

    People who have had personal items or information stolen

    People who have had items containing personal information stolen, such as a wallet, but have not yet found any fraudulent activity can seek an identity theft protection company's help to safeguard their identity against possible theft.

    Families

    Many parents don't realize that their children are at risk of identity theft. Identity theft protection can monitor children as well as their parents, sometimes offering special plans to cover the entire family.

    People who frequently use debit and credit cards

    People who frequently use debit and credit cards are at a higher risk of identity theft. Identity theft protection programs can help keep those credit and debit cards secure.

    Frequent travelers

    Anyone who travels frequently for vacations or business is susceptible to identity theft because they carry more identification documents. Identity protection can give clients extra assurance of their protection when they travel.

    Expert reviews for identity theft protection companies

    LifeLock

    LifeLock is an identity theft protection company that is headquartered in Tempe, Arizona. Founded in 2005, the company is considered one of the leading identity theft protection companies in the world. In 2017, LifeLock was acquired by Symantec Corp., a world leader in cyber security.

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    Identity Guard

    With nearly 20 years of experience, Identity Guard is a trusted provider of identity theft protection service. A product of Intersections Inc., Identity Guard protects both businesses and consumers. Identity Guard has offices in California, New Mexico and Illinois. Its company headquarters is in Chantilly, Virginia.

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    TrustedID

    Founded in 2004, TrustedID is an identity theft protection company that is headquartered in Palo Alto, CA. TrustedID’s suite of products like IDEssentials uses proactive safeguards against identity theft. Equifax acquired the company in 2013.

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    IdentityForce

    Headquartered in Framingham, Massachusetts, IdentityForce is a provider of identity theft protection with over 35 years of experience in helping protect people’s privacy. The company is focused on providing security solutions for individuals, families and businesses to safeguard against identity theft.

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    ProtectMyID

    ProtectMyID is an identity theft company with customers in the United States, the United Kingdom and Ireland. ProtectMyID offers various monitoring, protection and resolution services. It is owned by Experian Interactive.

    Read More
    ID Watchdog

    Headquartered in Denver, Colorado, ID Watchdog is an identity theft service that was founded in 2004. The company provides specialized proactive identity theft monitoring, alert and repair services to individuals and businesses.

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    AllClear ID

    Founded in 2004, AllClear ID is an identity theft protection company headquartered in Austin, TX. Originally known as Debix, the company now offers business and organization clients monitoring and resolution services for customers at risk of identity theft.

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    IDShield

    IDShield is an identity theft protection company that offers data monitoring, instant identity breach notifications and identity restoration services. It is a division of LegalShield. The company employs licensed private investigators to track this data, answer customers' questions and provide advice when necessary.

    Read More

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