Complete Ways to Prevent Identity Theft

11/6/2022

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An intruder or someone who is merely interested might quickly learn a lot about you online. Phishing attempts and other cybersecurity risks can target various information, including credit card numbers, bank account information, and others.

Most of this information was already made public, while some were obtained through data breaches. This indicates that a knowledgeable intruder could get all the data needed to steal someone else’s identity. This will provide them the opportunity to harm the victim’s finances, credit score, and reputation by taking out a loan or opening a credit card in the victim’s name, getting a tax refund they aren’t eligible for or paying for medical care they didn’t receive, and more. Recovery from this damage can take years and cost a lot of money.

The good news is that identity theft protection can help you prevent ID theft or help you regain your identity if you become a victim of it. The list of our top-rated identity theft protection services is provided below to assist you in selecting the best option.

IdentityForce

IdentityForce’s comprehensive identity theft protection solutions come with all the features you need to protect your family from various fraud types. In contrast to many of its competitors, the service includes social media identification tracking in its entry-level bundle. In addition to other unusual offerings, it offers junk mail opt-out. Extras like help with credit freezes, alerts for investment accounts, and three-bureau credit monitoring are included with the UltraSecure+Credit plan. A credit score simulator can also help you forecast how important financial decisions may affect your credit. The monthly fee to add kids is $2.75 for each choice.

PROS:

  • Comprehensive identity theft defense
  • Using two factors to authenticate
  • Surveillance of personal data on social media

CONS:

  • More expensive than other  plans
  • Mixed opinions about the user interface

IDShield

IDShield provides a range of related identity theft protection and restoration services, including tracking Social Security numbers, monitoring the dark web, and keeping an eye on court records and social media. IDShield distinguishes itself from the competition by employing experienced private investigators to look into potential identity theft situations and help regain members’ identities.

PROS:

  • 30 day no cost trial
  • Private investigators with a license for restitution
  • Extensive surveillance, including on social media accounts

CONS:

  • There is no annual plan discount.
  • Mixed opinions about the user interface

Price: 

  • Individual plan-  $14.95 to $19.95 per month 
  • Family plan – $29.95 to $34.95 per month

Aura

Families pay $50 per month, couples $29, and individuals $15. Aura offers a set of solutions designed to protect your privacy and deter identity theft. All of the company’s identity theft protection plans contain antivirus software, which checks for viruses with the appearance of malware, a password manager, and a VPN; these are all tools that can stop your data from being compromised and leave you vulnerable to identity theft.

This furthers a thorough examination of your money activities and your personal information, such as your Social Security number, your home’s title, and any criminal or legal activity involving your identity. Experts have complimented Aura’s ID theft prevention services for their effectiveness, and some believe that Aura frequently finds data leaks before anybody else.

PROS:

  • All plans include device protection, VPN access, and antivirus
  • Monitors financial institutions and credit records for fraud
  • Search public court documents for evidence of possible identity fraud

CONS:

  • More expensive than some competitors
  • Five Eyes intelligence agency may access data.

Price: 

  • Individual plan – $15 per month
  • Couple plan – $29 per month
  • Family plan – $50 per month

Zander

Those on a tight budget could find Zander to be an excellent option. The Essential and Elite Cyber Bundle, two identity theft protection packages offered by Zander, are less expensive than comparable packages from other firms on our ranking. Both plans have options for additional features, including a VPN, antivirus software, account takeover monitoring, and other extras. Both plans can be tailored to cover an individual or a family; the family plans provide coverage for two adults and their dependant children. Comprehensive identity theft monitoring, notifications, recovery, and $1 million in identity theft insurance are all included in Zander’s base plans. Zander plans will also offer you a recovery consultant if you become a victim of identity theft.

PROS:

  • Cost-effective pricing
  • Strong reputation for repairing identity theft

CONS:

  • Credit monitoring is absent
  • Limited mobile application

 Price:

  • Individuals plan –  $6.75 to $9.99. per month
  • Families plan –  $12.90 to $19.49 per month

ID Guard

Identity Guard uses IBM’s Watson artificial intelligence technology to safeguard your identity. Watson looks for personal information on other websites, social media, and the dark web. If Watson finds anything, especially sensitive data, like your Social Security number, it will alert you to the threat. Identity Guard also offers services that simplify your use of the bank, make payments, and shop safely online. Additionally provided are standard services like a smartphone app that can detect phishing attempts and three-bureau credit monitoring.

PROS:

  • Affordable cost for the basic plan
  • Artificial intelligence tools assist with data protection.
  • A variety of plans at various price points

CONS:

  • The cost of fully featured plans varies.
  • Fewer reports from credit bureaus

 Price:

  • Individual plans – $8.99–29.99 per month
  • Family plans – $14.99–39.99 per month. 

ID Watchdog

Two of ID Watchdog’s solutions for ID theft prevention are Select and Premium. The Select plan is limited because it only uses one bureau for credit monitoring and other crucial services. However, this may be sufficient if you only require basic ID theft protection without many features. The Premium identity theft protection plan is more cost-effective overall, including three-bureau credit monitoring, financial and social media account monitoring, a tool to prevent subprime loans, a personal VPN, a password manager, and other extra features. Both of these insurance plans include family editions that provide coverage for up to four kids.

PROS:

  • Plans for broad ID theft protection
  • Protect against 401k loss.
  • In a family plan, there is child protection

CONS:

  • Out-of-date user interface
  • No trial offer

Price:

  • Individual plans – $14.95 to $21.95 per month
  • Family plans – $23.95 to $34.95 per month. 

ReliaShield

ReliaShield offers protection against identity theft. The organization guarantees restoration assistance with a committed specialist if identity theft happens to you.

By omitting credit bureau monitoring, the ReliaShield Essential plan’s costs are kept to a minimum. Clients are advised to obtain free credit reports from major credit agencies instead. You can add credit monitoring by upgrading ReliaShield Prime or ReliaShield Elite plans. We recommend the Prime or Elite plan for most people since experts agree that credit monitoring is crucial to safeguarding your identity.

PROS:

  • Individuals and families have three alternatives.
  • Thorough identity monitoring

CONS:

  • No digital or device protection is available.
  • A lesser-known service than some others

 Price:

  • Individual – $7.99 to $21.99 per month
  • Families – $14.99 to $34.99 per month

LifeLock

The identity theft protection plans offered by LifeLock, a subsidiary of the Norton security corporation, include Standard, Advantage, and Ultimate Plus. These provide a range of digital security solutions in addition to credit reporting, identity monitoring, ID theft insurance, and support with identity recovery. There is a 60-day money-back guarantee on annual plans. A password manager, VPN, and other computer-related security services are all included in several different plans that Norton provides. These plans also include protection against ID theft. The numerous sorts of programs offered by Norton, ranked 7th, can be perplexing.

PROS:

  • A variety of plans at various price points
  • For device security, Norton can be paired with this.
  • 30 day no cost trial

CONS:

  • Pricey after promotions expire
  • Low-tiered plans only offer a few features.

Price:

  •  $8.99 to $23.99 per month for the first year with LifeLock

IdentityIQ

IdentityIQ offers four plans: Secure, Secure Plus, Secure Pro, and Secure Max. The Secure package includes daily Equifax credit report monitoring and basic identity theft monitoring. Secure Plus adds annual credit reports from all three bureaus. Additionally, customers of the Secure Pro Plan receive twice-yearly credit reports, three-bureau credit monitoring, and other benefits. The most expensive Secure Max package includes free family-wide identity theft monitoring. Credit score tracking and rehabilitation services are also added.

In addition, Secure Max provides $25,000 in ID theft insurance to safeguard the entire family and protect any children under the age of 24 who reside in the home.

PROS:

  • Add family members to your Max plan at no additional cost to you.
  • Monthly reports and scores from all three bureaus on the Max plan

CONS:

  • No free trial
  • After cancellation, one cannot ask for data deletion.
  • No monitoring of social media

 Price:

  • IdentityIQ costs $6.99 to $29.99 per month.

10 Ways to Avoid Identity Theft

You can use methods to reduce your risk of identity theft, even though it is impossible to prevent. These are:

  1. To stop someone from creating an account or applying for a loan in your name, freeze your credit so that no one may view or get a copy of your credit report.
  2. Collect your mail daily to stop someone from taking financial paperwork or other documents containing your personal information.
  3. Check your bank and credit card statements frequently for any odd purchases.
  4. Before throwing away documents containing personal information, shred them to prevent someone from retrieving them from a dumpster.
  5. Create unique passwords to lessen the impact of someone guessing the password for one of your sensitive accounts.
  6. Examine credit reports once a year to look for unusual activities. 
  7. Install antivirus software to defend your computer and other devices against viruses, phishing scams, and other online dangers.
  8. For an additional layer of security, enable two-factor authentication on your devices and accounts.
  9. To ensure the security of your personal information, clean electronics before giving them.
  10. Refuse pre-screened credit card offers since they can be accessed by thieves, who will then use them to register accounts in your name.

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Conclusion

Investing in identity theft protection services can help protect your cash and identity, and If you’ve previously experienced identity theft, we can assist you. Even if you don’t use an identity theft protection program, you still have some protection against it. Find an affordable program to guard against identity theft and offers the level of safety that is most important to you. Almost everyone needs basic credit monitoring and reporting, including alerts for questionable activity in their bank accounts. 

A less expensive package will work fine if you require these features. Midrange plans can be helpful if you search for protection beyond the most fundamental credit and financial monitoring. Dark web surveillance, social media tracking, and change-of-address alerts are some features of midrange plans. Midrange plans can also come with identity recovery services, such as a dedicated customer service representative and insurance, to aid in restoring your identity if it is stolen. Midrange insurance policies can offer planning options like credit score simulation tools to determine how important financial actions like obtaining a second mortgage will affect your credit.