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Names, social security numbers, birth dates, addresses, driver’s license and credit card numbers. There is a goldmine of information thieves search to steal daily. Identity theft protection services aren’t a foolproof way to keep yourself safe from them, but it does help catch them in action.
In fact, 143 million Americans are victims of identity theft. That’s half of the United States’ population whose credit is in danger. Identity theft protection companies use a variety of tools and employ technology to protect credit and identities of Americans every day.
The best identity theft protection services of 2020
- IdentityForce – Best basic plan
- Identity Guard – Best premium plan
- LifeLock – Best alert system
- ID Watchdog – Best for theft victims
- IdentityIQ – Best for family protection
IdentityForce – Best basic plan
IdentityForce provides a basic, easy-to-use service for those who haven’t fallen victim to identity theft yet.
- Basic monthly cost: $12.99
- Premium monthly cost: $19.99
- Mobile app: 4.2
- SimpleScore: 3.6
IdentityForce is a basic, easy to use tool that monitors both your credit and personal data. It also includes anti-keylogging software to keep your information protected. It’s one of the easiest services to start and with bank account transaction alerts, you can keep a close eye on your finances. IdentityForce is the perfect tool for the person who hasn’t had their identity stolen, but wants easy to use protection.
Keep in mind, IdentityForce doesn’t have much actionable advice. You may want to look elsewhere if you’re wanting to minimize your digital footprint.
Identity Guard – Best premium plan
Identity Guard protects you by constantly watching your accounts and supporting you with easy to follow practices.
- Basic monthly cost: $6.67
- Premium monthly cost: $16.67
- Mobile app: 4.1
- SimpleScore: 4.4
Identity Guard offers three tiers of protection. The first tier monitors your information on the dark web and gives you reports on your monthly risk assessments so you know where you stand. The mobile app is safe from phishing techniques as well. The Premier Plan includes everything the basic plan offers, but it also includes tax refund alerts and monitors your credit. The Total Plan covers every corner of the internet and is perfect for those who are interested in the latest protections — meaning Identity Guard offers protection in places some others don’t.
Lifelock – Best alert system
Lifelock is a complete, comprehensive system that runs 24/7 for your protection.
- Basic monthly cost: $8.99
- Premium monthly cost: $26.99
- Mobile app: 4.7
- SimpleScore: 3.2
Lifelock will alert you to any suspicious activity through text message, mobile app and email. If you need any further explanation, you can easily get in touch with customer service through the mobile app. Lifelock has the only plan with monthly credit score reports and 24/7 reports. Furthermore, Lifelock is paired with Norton Security, giving you an even bigger boost in your online protection.
The service focuses on data breaches making it perfect for both personal and business usage. The pricing comes in competitively at first, with $8.99 and $26.99 a month for the basic and premium plans, respectively. However, those are the introductory year pricing. After the first year, the prices jump to $11.99 and $34.99 a month. Depending on the plan you choose you may even be eligible for reimbursement of funds that are stolen. All in all, however, Lifelock is one of the best comprehensive programs to give you alerts whenever you need them.
ID Watchdog – Best for theft victims
ID Watchdog is the only company that can help customers recover from pre-existing identity thefts.
- Basic monthly cost: $14.95
- Premium monthly cost: $19.95
- Mobile app: 3.4
- SimpleScore: 3.25
ID Watchdog is the only company that will go out of the way to help you, even if you’ve been a victim in the past. All other companies will only protect you as the service is active. That being said, you will have to foot the bill for a few extra fees. It can add up, but it’s better than the possible alternative. For the service itself, it’s one of the more budget-friendly options. It also offers more for families, protecting spouses and up to four children.
Because ID Watchdog offers comprehensive benefits for people whose identity has been stolen in the past, this company is perfect if you’re already on high alert and need protection for more than just the time you’re a customer.
IdentityIQ – Best for family protection
IdentityIQ takes care of your entire family’s identity. This includes anything from mail theft to synthetic identity theft.
- Basic monthly cost: $8.99
- Premium monthly cost: $26.99
- Mobile app: N/A
- SimpleScore: 3
IdentityIQ is one of the only companies out there who protect the entire family. This includes protection against synthetic identity theft, which children are prone to. Its mission is to keep you safe through a number of security solutions like credit reporting and scoring alerts, dark web monitoring, enhanced credit monitoring, application monitoring, family protection and more.
IdentityIQ offers a number of pricing and plan options to best suit your budget. The most basic plan starts at $8.99 a month with the Secure Max plan coming in at $26.99 a month. Most of these plans also include three monthly bureau credit reports. If you’re looking for a way to protect your entire family, this is the company to choose from.
Because IdentityIQ is one of the only companies that include dark web protection and protection for kids, it’s great for protecting you and your family from all identity thefts.
The bottom line
Identity theft protection can be an amazing tool to help protect yourself and your assets. But it is important to pick the right service that will fit your particular needs. You don’t want to overpay for services you won’t use or be missing important aspects you should have.
It helps to pay attention to the features and additional reports that come with each. You also want to make sure that the services cover the various devices that are used on a daily basis in your home and office. Take the time to consider all the features and customer service channels to get a clear understanding what to expect.