In today’s world, where many users are either online or mobile, keeping your identity safe and protected has become a top priority.
Identity theft can be a huge nuisance
Your online identity holds much of the critical information regarding your personal, financial, social, and online life. The more people use the internet, the more they are exposed to some level of identity fraud.
Studies and research have shown that the numbers of such frauds and identity theft are increasing as time goes by.
Therefore, protecting your online identity has become increasingly important, especially if you have worked really hard to build something for yourself.
So, what can you do to protect yourself?
You can look into companies like Identity Guard® to help keep your identity safe and secure. With that in mind, this guide will show you all you need to know about Identity Guard, what they do, their services, the good, the bad, and the ugly.
The point of this guide is to inform you about identity fraud and theft. It will also show you what you can do to help prevent it.
Identity Guard Offer Details
According to the information on their website, Identity Guard is an identity monitoring company that offers a wide range of identity protection services to shield the users against theft. Their main goal is to help protect the identities of their users.
The features the company provides help individuals, and families keep track of personal and identity information. It costs a small monthly fee to hire these services, and Identity Guard is pretty affordable when compared to some of their competitors.
What makes Identity Guard different or even better than the competitors is the fact that the company applies a multi-pronged approach to identity protection. Their services help users protect the most vital personal information related to everything they do in life.
There are several different ways Identity Guard can help protect its users.
Users who decide to sign up can count on the following features:
- 3-bureau credit report (Premier product only)
- Monthly 1-bureau credit score* (Total and Premier products only)
- Near real-time notifications whenever something suspicious or unusual detected
- Monitoring for the use of their bank account, credit cards and SSN numbers
- Dark web monitoring
- IMB® Watson™ Artificial Intelligence monitors and processes billions of pieces of information to alert them about threats to their identity
- Reimbursement insurance**
The internet is a place where the black market for selling personal information is booming. Cybercriminals and hackers use this black market to sell and exchange all the personal and financial information they’ve stolen from the unaware internet users.
Fortunately, that part of the internet is known as the Dark Web, and very few know how to access this foul network where online criminal activities take place. Identity Guard alerts users when they detect their personal information on Dark Web.
Every internet user that isn’t aware of how to protect their personal information and identity online can fall victim to such attacks and activities. To prevent that, these users often hire ID protection companies not only to help protect them but also to retrieve their stolen identities.
There’s a lot of things these criminals can do with your information, such as making purchases in your name or taking your money.
Identity Guard Pros
- Individual and family ID protection plans
- Advanced risk protection with IBM® Watson™
- Easy to use
- Dark Web monitoring
- Mobile support
- Anti-phishing mobile app
- Safe Browsing Extention
Identity Guard Cons
- Credit reports only offered to those with more expensive plans
- Value Plan doesn’t include credit monitoring
- No money-back guarantee
- No 24/7 tech support
Identity Protection Services
In this age, where a data breach has become a real threat to users and business using the internet, it’s important to know what your options are when it comes to protecting your online identity. Having an adequate level of identity theft protection has become paramount.
That is where Identity Guard comes into play. The company offers a lot more than just credit monitoring.
With that in mind, there are three different identity protection plans, each with different features:
- Value plan – designed for persons who are interested in extensive monitoring, a value plan provides a comprehensive identity protection service that includes four features. The price is $7.50 per month.
- Total plan – designed for persons who need additional protection for their credit information, a total plan includes all the features of a value plan and more. It’s a great service that provides advanced identity protection. The price is $16.67 per month.
- Premier plan – designed for people who want the most advanced, up-to-date online protection, a premier plan provides the most powerful protection with a wide range of useful features. The price is $20.83 per month.
Since all three plans offer similar but different identity protection features, we’ll focus on the Premier plans and all the features it offers.
A Premier plan is aimed at individuals who have an educated understanding of how important online protection is today. These individuals are looking for the most advanced and powerful identity protection. While Value and Total plans provide an additional level of such protection, a Premier plan goes much further.
This plan doesn’t only help protect your identity online. It provides a full range of protection for your social, personal, and financial identity. It’s a complete protection plan that guarantees extra safety each time you surf the net.
Here are the features a Premier plan includes:
- Dark web monitoring
- Risk management report
- Safe browsing tools
- Anti-phishing mobile app
- Monthly credit score*
- Address monitoring
- 3-Bureau credit monitoring
- Tax refund alerts
- Credit score and report
- Social insight report
We’ll delve deeper into some of these features just to make sure our readers get a full understanding of how they help protect their identities online.
IBM® Watson™ AI
IBM® Watson™ artificial intelligence sends alerts your way when a piece of your personal information is detected where it could potentially be misused. This powerful AI monitors enormous chunks of data that flow online, and it processes all that information to identify potential threats to your identity.
Bank Account Takeovers
This feature alerts you every time a change to your personal information is detected. If a third party tries to make any change to your email address, address, or name, you get alerted.
This also applies to your financial security as well. If Identity Guard detects someone trying to add a new account or become a new holder of your bank accounts, including IRA, savings, checking, and so on, you’ll be automatically notified.
Dark Web Monitoring
Each time your personal identity information is detected on the dark web, you’ll be alerted.
ID Guard provides a thorough monthly Vantage 3.0 credit score. This score is based on TransUnion data.
Social Insight Report
IBM® Watson™ can also help you identify things you can do better regarding your online identity on social media platforms such as Facebook. It helps analyze your timeline to assess your online image and recommend things you can do to keep your online identity safe.
What’s really great about all three programs is that all of them include $1 million in identity theft protection insurance with no deductible.
In case that identity theft does occur, the company offers reimbursement insurance. This insurance covers your losses up to $1 million. This additional insurance backup offers you peace of mind in case hackers manage to get the best of you.
Even though it is highly unlikely that hackers and cybercriminals manage to somehow bypass all security measures of your ID protection, the company offers additional services in the form of $1 million reimbursement insurance.
This additional insurance covers your losses that might come from identity theft-related travel expenses, lost wages, legal fees, health expenses, etc.
Cost of Signing Up for Identity Guard
Signing up for identity protection service includes several cost tiers users can choose from. The most popular plan is the Premier Plan that starts at $20.83* per month. Users choose this plan because it offers the most value while being very cost-efficient.
For those who don’t need such advanced identity protection, there’s a cheaper version with only the most basic features, starting at $7.50* per month. However, this basic plan lacks certain features that ensure full protection.
The plan doesn’t include credit reports or credit monitoring.
We recommend the Total Plan that starts at $16.67* per month
. It provides all the best features you need, and you get the most value for your money. The Total Plan provides credit monitoring and a monthly credit score*.
How to Use Identity Guard Service
This ID protection service is quite easy to use. The company made the user interface appealing, dynamic, and user-friendly. Viewing your account online requires only a few steps. You can personalize your dashboard to fit your taste and needs better.
The dashboard is where all the action takes place. Any issues that require your immediate attention or action will be displayed in the dashboard. This is also where you receive all essential notifications and information about your account.
The user interface is quite intuitive and makes things so much easier. For those who are always on the move, there’s an Identity Guard app. It’s available for both Apple and Android, and you can install it to track your identity from anywhere in the world.
The app gives you access to your credit scores, credit reports, and account notifications. If any issues with your identity are detected by Identity Guard, the app automatically suggests the best course of action to take to ensure maximum protection at any time.
Family Protection Plan
The company doesn’t offer protection for individuals only – it also has a Family plan. It’s an excellent way to add extra layers of protection for your children and spouse and save some cash along the way. Hackers and identity thieves often target children as these attacks mostly go undetected.
Children don’t have credit histories, which makes them harder to track and protect. Ensuring that your children are protected also means protecting their credit histories. The Family plan provides protection for minor children and adults in a single household. The price starts at 12.50 per month.
Why We Like It
We like it because of the comprehensive and advanced monitoring services the company offers. These services help users protect their bank accounts, social security numbers, credit cards, personal information such as an address, name, etc.
Their plans are quite affordable and effective. Each plan offers a range of features that ensure a certain level of identity protection. On top of all that, this service has an intuitive user interface, which makes the entire account navigation very straightforward.
The account is easy to use, and users get access to the most important information very quickly. Everything the users need to know is accessible from either the Quick Links box or the tabs at the top of the account page.
The best thing is the dashboard. It provides a clear overview of the user’s account, letting them know if any new alerts, notifications, or actions need to be taken, as well as all the things that are monitored.
That aside, one of the best things about this service is the mobile app. Compatible with Android and iOS devices, the app has a user-friendly interface and provides access to credit scores, credit reports, and notifications on the go.
More importantly, users get the best course of action in case their identity has been compromised in any way.
The company takes pride in sending prompt alerts to users when their identity is in danger. All users receive prompt notifications by text, phone, or email, the moment any unusual activity related to their personal, social, and financial identity has been detected.
Last but not least is the $1 million in identity theft insurance**. Any user that becomes a victim of identity theft can use this insurance to cover the costs related to restoring their identity. These costs include child care costs, travel expenses, lost wages, and legal fees.
The only thing that isn’t included is any monetary loss due to identity theft. A great thing is that the company offers identity restoration assistance. Users who have become victims of identity theft get assigned a dedicated case member.
This member provides all the assistance necessary to help the users understand the needed preventive measures, including sometimes filing a police report, and reporting stolen credit cards to creditors.
What Can Be Better
The first thing we have to mention is that the monthly credit scores provided by Identity Guard aren’t the FICO scores used by most lenders of this sort. There are also some features missing that other competitors offer, which could make their entire service much better and more effective.
The best example is the missing option to update your account with new email addresses. We’re fully aware that this isn’t a big deal at all, but it could improve the overall protection service. Adding additional email addresses is the addition of extra types of monitoring, and you can’t get enough of that in the online world.
Still, the biggest downside is that the protection it offers comes with a high price for those on a budget. Despite the fact that their plans are quite affordable, there are people on a budget who can’t afford the two most expensive plans.
The problem is that only these two plans offer additional features such as triple-bureau credit monitoring. We’re not trying to bash on more affordable plans, but the devil hides in details, and we’re trying to point all things out so that our readers can make an educated decision.
The service provides personal information monitoring, but this service only notifies users of potential security breaches.
The company’s customer service is not always available. It’s something that could disappoint many potential users who are having issues early in the early morning or late at night.
Identity Guard Alternatives
- True Identity – Protect your personal information & monitor your credit completely with TransUnion.
- Identity IQ – The unique Identity IQ provides members with the components necessary to prevent the most serious forms of identity theft.
- IdentityForce – Protecting what matters most.
- Identity Guard vs LifeLock – Here’s how the competition breaks down between Identity Guard and Lifelock.
Identity Guard – The Bottom Line
In our opinion, Identity Guard is one of the best identity theft protection services we reviewed. It provides advanced protection in a very comprehensive way. While they do not offer a trial, they do have cheaper monthly prices compared to the other services we reviewed.
Identity Guard is a good solution for people in need of individual protection. They also provide family protection that covers all adults and children living within the same household.
Whether you are looking for protection for just yourself, or your entire family, we highly recommend Identity Guard!
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*The score you receive with Identity Guard is provided for educational purposes to help you understand your credit. It is calculated using the information contained in your TransUnion credit file. Lenders use many different credit scoring systems, and the score you receive with Identity Guard is not the same score used by lenders to evaluate your credit.
** Identity Theft Insurance underwritten by insurance company subsidiaries or affiliates of American International Group‚ Inc. The description herein is a summary and intended for informational purposes only and does not include all terms‚ conditions and exclusions of the policies described. Please refer to the actual policies for terms‚ conditions‚ and exclusions of coverage. Coverage may not be available in all jurisdictions.
Your card will be charged either a monthly or annual fee, depending on the membership plan you choose. You may cancel your membership anytime simply by contacting Identity Guard.