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Top 10 Best Identity Theft Protection Services & Companies (2023)

Erin Donaghue - Top10 Writer
Best Identity Theft Protection Services & Companies

Imagine being accused of posting a $600 bail you never knew about, only to wake up one day facing over $4,000 in debt due to a court no-show you had no hand in.

This was Jessica’s reality, who became a victim of identity theft when her wallet—and her identity—were stolen from a San Francisco bar in 2018.

But identity theft extends beyond our physical possessions: our increasing reliance on digital transactions amplifies the threat in the online world. For example, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) recorded nearly 700,000 reports of credit card fraud alone.

Fortunately, affordable identity theft protection services offer a convenient way to monitor online activity conducted in your name. Here’s a look at our selection of the top 10 most dependable ID theft protection services to help you protect your finances and assets from imposters.

Our Top 10 Best ID theft Protection Services & Companies in 2023:

The table below provides a quick comparison of the best ID theft protection services on the market today. You can compare the cost of each service, view user ratings and reviews, and check out the main features of each service to help you decide which is right for your needs. 

Compare the Best ID Theft Protection Services
Identity Guard
Zander Identity Theft
Reviews110 reviews150 reviews42 reviews50 reviews10 reviewsWrite Review42 reviews11 reviews30 reviews30 reviews
Best for
Norton antivirus users
Full-spectrum protection
People seeking to recover their identity
Whole-family protection
Best for customizable identity theft protection
Identity restoration and assistance
Those looking to protect their credit
ID theft and PC maintenance
Parents and children
Internet banking
Starting price
per month
$7.20/monthly or $79.99/year
per month
per month
From $6.99/month
per month
per month
per month
Free trial
60-day money-back guarantee
Free trial: Yes
30 days
Free 1-time diagnostic
30 days
30-day free trial
3-bureau credit monitoring
Family package
Insurance coverage
$1 million
$1 million
$1 million
$1 million
$1 million
$1 million
$1 million
$1 million
$1 million
$1 million
Mobile app

In-Depth Reviews of Our Top ID Theft Protection Picks

  • 1


    • 60-day money-back guarantee
    • Norton antivirus users
    • $9.99per month

    A product of anti-virus heavyweight Norton, LifeLock boasts the tech, accessibility, and ease that you’d expect from the industry-leading company. Most impressive are the plans themselves, which not only blend online security and ID theft protection but offer more flexibility than usual. 

    Lifelock’s plans include ID and Social Security number alerts and are offered in tandem with Norton’s 360 suite. This means that combo plans net you VPN services plus solid ID theft features like stolen funds reimbursement that ranges from $25,000 to $1 million dollars, bank account and credit card activity alerts, and even 401(k) investment account alerts on the Ultimate Plus plan. 

    LifeLock also offers LifeLock Junior, an affordable add-on for children under 18 that includes 

    Dark Web monitoring and file-sharing network searches. All plans include 24/7 live member support and the aide of US-based identity restoration specialists.

    • Reimbursement up to $1 million
    • Antivirus and protection from cyber threats
    • 60-day money-back guarantee
    • Only worth it if you want Norton 360
    • Pricing can be confusing
  • 2
    Identity Guard

    Identity Guard

    very good
    • Free trial: Yes
    • Full-spectrum protection
    • $7.20/monthly or $79.99/yearper month

    Identity Guard has safeguarded over 45 million identities and resolved more than 140,000 cases to date. They collaborate with IBM Watson's AI technology, leveraging its advanced data analysis and predictive capabilities to enhance threat detection.

    The service protects your online identity by monitoring the dark web (a notorious hub for cybercrime activities) and alerting you if criminals are selling your personal information. Identity Guard also continuously monitors your personal and financial data, with their U.S.-based support team always at the ready to handle any emerging issues.

    Why we chose Identity Guard: With 20 years of industry experience, Identity Guard stands out for providing effective identity theft protection and monitoring services, powered by AI. These services promptly alert you to a wide range of potential threats. They also offer up to $1 million in insurance coverage per adult to cover legal fees and replace lost funds.

    Our experience: We found that even Identity Guard's most budget-friendly plan provides top-tier protection from ID fraud. We were particularly impressed by the inclusion of dark web monitoring in this entry-level subscription package.

    • Monitors credit score with all 3 credit bureaus
    • Utilizes IBM’s Watson AI tech for optimal performance
    • $2,000 emergency cash fund
    • No 24/7 customer service
    • 3-credit reporting only with premier plans
  • 3
    Zander Identity Theft

    Zander Identity Theft

    • No
    • People seeking to recover their identity
    • $6.75/month

    Zander Insurance's anti-identity theft service diligently scans the dark web to prevent criminals from selling personal information such as your Social Security and driver's license numbers. The company offers plans for both individuals and families. Notably, their family plans cover two adults and up to 10 children at no additional cost.

    Their top-tier package, the Elite Cyber Bundle, includes online security features such as a VPN and antivirus protection. This service also defends against all forms of identity theft, including financial fraud, medical fraud, and child identity theft. Additionally, it's endorsed by radio personality and financial guru Dave Ramsey.

    The unique selling point of Zander Insurance is its focus on premium recovery service. They provide a dedicated U.S.-based recovery team and up to $1 million per person in insurance coverage. However, to maintain low prices, they don't offer credit or financial transaction monitoring, which they believe individuals can manage independently through banks and credit bureaus.

    Why we chose Zander Insurance: Their emphasis on top-tier identity recovery services, such as full-service recovery, makes them an excellent choice for those at an elevated risk of identity theft. This includes previous victims of ID theft, individuals who frequently conduct online transactions, and those active on multiple social media accounts.

    Our experience: We were impressed by Zander Insurance's commitment to personalized identity recovery and premium identity theft insurance, particularly given their long-standing reputation as trustworthy insurance providers. We also appreciated that Zander provides access to a trained team of specialists ready to address any identity breaches promptly.

    • Unlimited family plan
    • One of the most affordable options
    • Comprehensive recovery services, including lost wage coverage
    • No credit monitoring
    • No free trial period
  • 4
    very good
    • No
    • Whole-family protection
    • $19.95per month

    myFICO, the consumer division of FICO – the company behind the FICO credit score – provides a robust identity theft defense plan with comprehensive credit report monitoring, especially catering to those seeking to improve their credit.

    The platform delivers significant value through extensive three-bureau monitoring and 24/7 identity restoration services. It also includes $1 million in identity theft insurance. However, while the advanced tier offers quarterly updates, the premier subscription provides monthly updates. You receive alerts for any inquiries made on your credit reports, potentially indicating fraudulent use of your personal information. Regrettably, myFICO does not offer a free trial or family plans. Although you can cancel anytime, they do not provide a refund.

    Why we chose myFICO: myFICO distinguishes itself from the competition by prioritizing thorough credit monitoring across all three bureaus, irrespective of the subscription plan selected. Its alert system for credit inquiries also serves as a unique potential fraud warning feature.

    Our experience: We were impressed with myFICO's dual focus on credit monitoring and identity theft protection, making it an invaluable resource for individuals aiming to improve their credit scores while ensuring online safety. We particularly liked the FICO score simulator, which allows users to visualize how different financial decisions could impact their credit score.

    • Monthly and tri-monthly reports
    • Receive alerts through SMS, email, or mobile app
    • 24/7 customer support
    • Basic plan only includes 1-bureau coverage
    • Minor limitations on some credit report data
  • 5


    • None
    • Best for customizable identity theft protection
    • From $6.99/month

    IdentityIQ offers comprehensive protection against identity theft and fraud through its user-friendly mobile and desktop apps. It provides peace of mind with various monitoring functions, ensuring your personal information is safe from misuse. The service is available in four plans, catering to different needs and budgets, with even the basic tier offering up to $1 million in ID theft and lost income coverage. However, it lacks social media monitoring and shares information with third parties for promotional purposes.

    Key features include dark web monitoring and family coverage on higher-tier packages. IdentityIQ monitors credit reports from up to three bureaus, internet, and dark web activity, and address changes with credit reporting agencies. It also offers optional Bitdefender Premium VPN and Total Security antivirus for additional protection.

    Pricing varies across four tiers: Secure, Secure Plus, Secure Pro, and Secure Max, ranging from basic to advanced features. All plans offer substantial coverage, with the top tier providing additional benefits like identity restoration with limited power of attorney and family coverage for members under 24. Monthly and annual billing options are available, offering up to 35% savings. However, there is no free trial option.

    Why we chose IdentityIQ: Its offering of up to $1 million in identity theft insurance across all plans, including family coverage options on higher-tier packages, ensures extensive coverage and peace of mind for users.

    Our experience: We appreciated the comprehensive customer support offered by IdentityIQ. We understood that when issues arose, guidance through the steps of identity theft recovery was a given, such as contacting credit bureaus and handling fraudulent activities on their credit reports. After the fact, the IdentityIQ team proactively follows up on cases to ensure the issue is solved.

    • Up to $1M stolen funds reimbursement
    • Comprehensive dark web monitoring
    • Real-time credit & ID monitoring
    • No refunds for partial months
    • No free trial option offered
  • 6

    • Yes
    • Those looking to protect their credit
    • N/A collaborates with ScoreSense to offer an effective solution against identity theft. The platform conducts daily scans to identify irregular credit report activities and other potential signs of identity theft, promptly alerting you to such occurrences. You also have the option to request complete credit reports from all three bureaus to review for errors, unauthorized changes, or suspicious activity.

    Furthermore, expands its monitoring services to other personal accounts, such as driver's licenses or credit cards. It delves into the dark web to ensure that your personal data isn't being sold by cybercriminals. To enhance your protection, the service offers $1 million insurance coverage to compensate for any financial loss resulting from identity theft.

    However, if you want protection against a wide array of identity theft scams, you'll need to set up additional account monitoring manually. This platform also doesn't provide full-service identity resolution in the event of a breach. Instead, they guide you through the necessary steps, ranging from closing unauthorized accounts to filing police reports and FTC complaints.

    Why we chose If you want to keep a close watch on your credit reports, is an excellent choice. The service provides access to personalized consultations with credit specialists and a dedicated dispute center. Moreover, it delivers monthly updates from all three credit bureaus and actively monitors for any unusual activity daily.

    Our experience: We were positively impressed with’s comprehensive three-bureau credit monitoring. If you're open to being actively involved in protecting your online identity, this "one-size-fits-all" service should suffice.

    • Ability to add numerous accounts to be monitored
    • Continuous monitoring
    • Instant alerts of suspicious activity
    • No pricing information available
    • No 24/7 customer support
  • 7


    • Free 1-time diagnostic
    • ID theft and PC maintenance
    • $19.99per month

    MyCleanID combines identity theft monitoring with specialized diagnostic software to effectively protect against identity theft. This tool scours your hard drive and conceals the location of any data—sensitive information like phone numbers, email addresses, and credit card numbers—that could be exploited by identity thieves. 

    Furthermore, MyCleanID constantly tracks changes to your credit reports, newly opened accounts, and suspicious activity tied to your Social Security number or physical address. The service even includes lost wallet protection, with up to $2,000 in emergency cash and a maximum of $1 million in identity theft insurance.

    MyCleanID is unique in protecting both your local device and cloud-based personal information. And all you need to do is download the diagnostic software to your computer. But though it’ll flag issues for free, correcting these problems will require a $19.99 annual subscription. Also, it lacks multiple subscription tiers with varying levels of features.

    Why we chose MyCleanID: MyCleanID employs diagnostic software that scans for security risks on your device, offering an added layer of protection to its identity safeguards. The anti-identity theft product also provides consistent monitoring and alert systems. These could ultimately prove invaluable to keep your information out of ID thieves’ reach. 

    Our experience: We didn’t see similar diagnostic software featured on any other competitor’s site. This tool genuinely impressed us, as it gave us unique insight into how locally stored information could expose us to identity theft. However, at $19.99/year on top of the monthly subscription fee, we’d prefer to see more customizable subscription levels.

    • Up to $2,000 lost wallet protection
    • Unique PC protection software fosters proactive online safety
    • 24/7 US-based support
    • Need to pay 1-time activation fee
    • Only 1 plan available
  • 8


    very good
    • 30 days
    • Parents and children
    • $9.99per month

    As far as ID theft goes, you’d be hard-pressed to find a company with more authority and expertise than Experian. As one of the 3 leading credit reporting bureaus, Experian is already firmly entrenched in the ins and outs of the field. With IdentityWorks, its ID theft protection service, you can rest assured that you’re in solid hands. 

    Experian offers individual and family plans for up to 10 children. Standard plans include Social Security tracking, Dark Web surveillance, and insurance of up to $1 million. Other features include sex offender reigstry and Experian CreditLock, which provides real-time alerts and allows you to lock and unlock your Experian credit file with the tap of a mouse.

    • Respected name in ID theft
    • Free 30-day trial
    • Solid family plans
    • Quarterly FICO scores
    • No 24/7 customer support
  • 9


    very good
    • 30-day free trial
    • Internet banking
    • $17.99per month

    IdentityForce has 40 years of experience in ID theft and is celebrated for the scope and breadth of its services. This well-respected company was one of the first to offer ID theft for children and has likewise been innovative in more recent services such as social media identity monitoring and mobile implementation. 

    IdentityForce monitors court records, Dark Web activity, and sex offender monitoring and offers smart alerts in more than 5 major areas. The service notably includes medical ID fraud protection and online tools for personal computers. Add to that insurance of up to $1 million, dedicated mobile apps, and a 50-point promise to customers, and it’s clear why IdentityForce has endured for more than 4 decades and has become a destination for discerning individuals concerned about protecting their identity.

    • More than 40 years of experience
    • Medical ID fraud protection
    • 50-point member manifesto for customers
    • Need to contact CS for family plan info
    • Pricier than other services
Frequently Asked Questions
Which is better LifeLock or Identity Guard?+-

LifeLock and Identity Guard are both leading providers of ID theft services and may appeal to different people with different needs. Identity Guard currently has the better deal and compares favorably with the more expensive LifeLock, with 3-bureau credit monitoring and an AI-backed network.

Are identity theft protection services worth it?+-

Identity theft is a growing problem in the US and ID theft protection can be one of the best safeguards against it. Those who have been victims already are especially at risk, and those who do lots of banking or conduct other sensitive transactions online may benefit from added protection.

How many times has LifeLock been hacked?+-

LifeLock's CEO has allegedly been hacked more than a dozen times, including after a publicity stunt in which he publicly shared his social security number as a testament to the strength of his company's security prowess.

What’s the difference between identity theft protection and monitoring services?+-

Although the terms are often used interchangeably, identity theft protection and credit monitoring are quite different. ID theft protection tools monitor multiple sources, including your credit score, the Dark Web, and various other components, for evidence of fraudulent activity. Credit monitoring services, on the other hand, are solely designed to monitor your credit score and notify you if it changes unexpectedly.

What should I do if my identity is stolen?+-

If your identity is stolen, the first step is to report it to the FTC, online or by phone. Based on your circumstances, you may be required to file a police report. You will also need to contact companies to let them know your information has been used fraudulently.

Why is identity theft insurance important?+-

Identify theft insurance is designed to cover any costs incurred when your ID is stolen. This includes paying for a credit report, replacing identification, and covering legal fees if you need to go to court. Without some form of insurance, you will need to pay these costs out of pocket, and they can quickly add up to hundreds or even thousands of dollars.

Is credit monitoring a good idea?+-

Yes, credit monitoring is a great idea if you’re worried about fraud, identity theft, or anything related to these. With a decent credit monitoring service, you will be alerted immediately to unexpected changes to your credit score, fraudulent transactions, and more.

What should you do if you experience identity theft?+-

The first thing anyone who experiences identity theft should do is report it to the FTC. This can be done over the phone or online, and you may be asked for additional information. You can also contact the police, any companies or organizations where the fraud has occurred, and your bank. You should also freeze your credit report and contact your identity theft insurance provider if you have one.

Do the police investigate identity theft?+-

Identity theft is a serious matter that will always be investigated by the relevant authorities. This can include the police, especially if you make a direct report to your local authorities. However, it’s more often dealt with by federal investigative agencies such as the FBI.

How We Reviewed the Best Identity Theft Protection Services - Our Methodology

With a wide variety of online anti-identity theft services, we considered several factors to evaluate some of the best ID theft protection services.

We reviewed the adaptability of their services, their cost, their monitoring techniques, the restoration process, and the reliability of customer service. We also examined the provision of extra online security tools like VPN access and antivirus protection, in addition to their fundamental identity safety measures. Our assessment criteria include:

  • Surveillance methods, including credit report and dark web monitoring
  • Identity restoration methods, whether full-service or self-guided
  • Cost-effectiveness
  • Customer service accessibility
  • Additional online security tools
  • Degree of product customizability
  • User reviews

What’s Identity Theft Protection?

Identity theft protection services aim to safeguard your personal information from fraudulent use, like opening new credit card accounts or taking out loans in your name. Typically, most ID theft services feature identity and credit monitoring, which are designed to detect suspicious activity, such as unauthorized purchases, in real time. 

Many also include insurance to mitigate costs if a breach occurs and offer resources to help resolve theft issues and facilitate ID recovery.

How Does Identity Theft Happen?

Most identity thefts occur via the internet when you don’t implement appropriate cybersecurity measures. Weak passwords can be easily guessed or cracked while using outdated antivirus software, leaving your data vulnerable to newer malware.

For example, one common trick is phishing scams, which lure you into submitting your details on fake websites. During these scams, you unknowingly surrender your passwords and personal data while criminals remain undetected. An updated antivirus suite, however, would be able to identify suspicious or unsafe websites.

Some hackers may also infiltrate your device directly using viruses or remote desktop software, while others pry into your accounts using malicious methods, such as keylogging. Additionally, criminals can steal your personal information through a data breach at companies or other organizations that have your details on record. 

For example, an alleged leak on a hacker forum exposed over 200 million Twitter users’ emails in 2022. With your data, criminals can commit serious offenses, such as applying for loans in your name, emptying your bank accounts, or selling your information on the dark web or other criminal forums.

If you suspect identity theft, act immediately. The potential damage extends far beyond data loss and can have serious repercussions.

Why’s Identity Theft Protection Important to Have?

Identity theft protection is essential because it rapidly flags questionable activity, allowing you to take preventative measures. Such mitigating actions may include disputing a fraudulent account or freezing your credit. Every second counts—the longer a criminal has access to your personal information, the more damage they can do.

Most identity protection services will handle the heavy lifting, shutting down unauthorized accounts and liaising with your bank and credit agencies to report fraud. They also offer online security tools such as VPNs and antivirus software to thwart hackers, preventing identity theft from the get-go.

Additionally, many of these services include insurance coverage in case of a breach, giving you peace of mind that you’ll recover from any financial losses.

Do I Need an Identity Theft Protection Service?

Ultimately, the decision boils down to personal preference. Would you rather pay a small fee for coverage in case you fall victim to identity theft? 

Trusted identity theft prevention services offer valuable protection against financial and identity-related harm caused by criminals and malicious actors. 

High-risk individuals, especially, could significantly benefit from these advanced safeguards against identity theft. This includes prior victims—since their stolen information may be traded or sold between bad actors who could victimize them again—and those who frequently conduct sensitive online transactions.

However, it’s crucial to understand that ID theft protection services don’t entirely prevent identity theft. Given this, it becomes increasingly apparent that you need to be savvy and proactive in protecting your personal information.

How to Prevent Identity Theft

Subscribing to an identity theft protection service doesn’t prevent your personal information from being stolen. Instead, it enables you to take immediate action if fraud is detected. These services monitor various sources, including your credit files, social media accounts, and the dark web, to identify any signs of criminal activity.

Fortunately, there are a few actions you can take to proactively prevent identity theft. These include the following:

  • Regularly check your financial accounts: Frequently review your credit card statements and bank accounts to identify suspicious or unfamiliar expenditures.
  • Use strong and unique passwords: By employing robust passwords (think: “SDjcks2347\]LKS":>” vs. “Yourname2023”), you make it harder for criminals to guess or crack them and limit the potential damage if one of your passwords gets leaked or stolen.
  • Install up-to-date antivirus software: Hackers often attempt to install malware on devices to gain unauthorized access or steal personal information. Using a reliable antivirus program can detect and block malicious software before it infiltrates your device, reducing the risk of this happening.
  • Safeguard physical information: Make sure your mail is delivered to a secure location or locked mailbox. Additionally, shred all personal documents before discarding them so they can’t be stolen from your trash.

Is an ID Theft Protection Tool Worth the Investment?

Yes, ID theft prevention tools are critical to ensuring effective identity safeguarding. As we rely more and more on phones and computers, the threat of digital identity theft continues to rise. If you’ve been a victim of identity theft in the past, you’re particularly vulnerable. And your risk increases every time you engage in sensitive online transactions.

If you want to add an extra layer of security to your life and reduce the risk of identity theft, consider spending a few dollars per month on an ID theft protection service.

What Types of Identity Theft Protection Services Are Out There?

Identity theft protection services offer a spectrum of features and varying degrees of safeguarding measures. Some, like credit report monitoring, deliver basic protection but don’t guarantee full coverage. Others are more comprehensive but also often more expensive.

Here’s a breakdown of these services, with an insight into their specific offerings and advantages:

  • Credit report monitoring: Credit report surveillance services essentially track your credit report activity in real time. This function will notify you of changes, including loan applications or new bank accounts opened in your name. 
  • Identity monitoring: More comprehensive identity monitoring is designed to scan various sources for compromised or stolen personal data that criminals could weaponize. These sources include the dark web, normal websites, and several other databases. 
  • Identity recovery: Reliable identity recovery services (which usually form a part of an ID theft protection suite) can significantly streamline the process of undoing the damage caused by ID theft. Some companies even provide professional assistance, allowing you to relax while professionals handle the issue.
  • Identity theft insurance: Another notable consideration is the type and level of insurance coverage bundled with your identity theft protection service. Some provide a high level of coverage, shielding you from financial losses following identity theft.

Other Types of Identity Theft Protection Services

Tax-Related ID Protection

People who illegally obtain personal information such as a Social Security number can file fraudulent tax returns to the IRS. However, to combat rising tax-related identity theft, the IRS teamed up with tax firms, payroll processors, and state tax administrators. Together, they conduct awareness campaigns to inform citizens about safe practices.

Americans should protect their tax records, store their Social Security cards in safe locations, and use reliable security software and strong passwords when submitting sensitive personal information online.

Medical ID Protection

Though less frequent, medical identity theft is an equally severe threat. It involves the misuse of your personal data to procure medical services or medications. The dark web can trade this information so total strangers can use it, and medical providers can even exploit it by submitting excessive or fabricated claims to insurance providers.

For this reason, merely protecting your data online may not be sufficient. Experts recommend checking health insurance records yearly for potential discrepancies.

Common Types of Identity Theft Scams

Criminals employ various scams with the sole purpose of stealing your identity or personal information. However, not all ID theft cases involve modern technology, as phone scams and physical information theft are still prevalent. In fact, Americans have lost a staggering $39.5 billion to phone scams alone in the past year. 

Here are some common identity theft scams to be aware of:

  • Phishing: Phishing scams involve criminals posing as legitimate companies or organizations. These scams typically arrive via email or text messages appearing to be from trustworthy entities, such as banks. They often urge immediate action, like updating personal or payment details, but this information is quickly stolen once entered.
  • Hacking and data breaches: Even with the most advanced cybersecurity measures, everyone remains vulnerable to ID theft. Hackers employ diverse techniques to gain entry into devices or corporate databases, enabling them to steal vast amounts of personal information.
  • Formjacking: Criminals may target unsecured online retailers or other service providers by inserting malicious code designed to help them steal your payment information. This technique often revolves around manipulating a form, so when you complete it, the code sends a copy of your information to the attacker.
  • Physical theft: Physical identity theft continues to pose a significant threat. Reportedly, more than 50% of ID theft incidents between 2006 and 2016 were traced back to non-digital vulnerabilities. This form of fraud can occur through various means, including the obvious theft of a purse, wallet, or mail.

Other Kinds of Identity Theft

In addition to the standard types of identity theft mentioned above, you should be aware of a few other less common ones:

  • Tax-related identity theft: Criminals can exploit stolen information, such as Social Security numbers, to file fraudulent tax returns with the IRS. Although efforts are made to mitigate this risk, it’s still important to secure your Social Security cards and tax records.
  • Medical identity theft: While relatively uncommon, medical identity theft occurs when someone utilizes your personal information to obtain medical services or submit falsified insurance claims.
  • Child identity theft: Scammers may steal children’s identities to open unauthorized bank accounts, apply for loans, and engage in other fraudulent activities.
  • Synthetic identity theft: This form of identity theft involves combining authentic (often stolen) information with fabricated data to create an entirely fictitious identity.

What Are Some Common Signs of Identity Theft?

Here are a few common indicators of identity theft to watch out for:

  1. Financial discrepancies: One of the first red flags signaling identity theft is unusual or unauthorized transactions on your credit card or bank records.
  2. Your mail is going missing: A common tactic criminals use is to reroute your mail to an address of their choosing. This allows them to receive your mail, giving them access to your sensitive information, such as bank statements, credit card details, or other personal information.
  3. Debt collectors contact you: If someone has been using your identity to take out loans and credit cards but has failed to make their payments, you may find debt collectors chasing you for debts you didn’t know you had.
  4. Your medical records show discrepancies: Some criminals may use your personal information to access medical treatment. If your benefits don’t add up or you receive an unexpected medical bill, it could indicate that someone’s using your information to receive “free” medical care.
  5. Your information’s exposed in a data breach: Data breaches are surprisingly common. In fact, such breaches exposed more than six million data records around the globe in the first quarter of 2023. These information leaks often result in personal information being sold on the dark web, which could put you at risk of identity theft.

How Can I Find Out If Someone Is Using My Identity?

One of the most effective ways to detect online identity theft is by regularly monitoring your bank and credit card statements. Financial institutions typically offer access to statements through online platforms or mobile apps, so you can easily review your recent deposits, withdrawals, charges, and payments. 

If you notice something you didn’t authorize, consider it a clear warning sign of potential identity theft. Additionally, it’s essential to routinely check your credit report from all three major credit bureaus: Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion. You can access your credit reports for free by visiting

How to Report Identity Theft

If you become a victim of identity theft, it’s crucial to report the incident to the FTC. You can easily do this over the phone or through their online platform; just be sure to provide as much information as possible.

Additionally, contact your bank, credit card provider, and any relevant organizations affected by the fraudulent activity conducted in your name. It’s also recommended to notify one or more of the major credit bureaus—Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax—to place a fraud alert or request a credit freeze if necessary.

Filing a police report is another important step. To do so, you’ll need your ID, proof of your address, your FTC identity theft report, and any evidence supporting the occurrence of identity theft.

How to Choose the Right Identity Theft Protection Service

While all the identity theft protection services listed here are excellent choices, it’s essential to find the one that suits your needs. Begin by considering your budget to eliminate expensive options immediately.

Next, assess your requirements. Do you prefer credit monitoring or comprehensive identity monitoring? What level of insurance coverage do you need? Is professional assistance available if you experience identity theft?

Once you’ve considered these questions, you’ll be better equipped to make an informed decision. Remember, many providers offer free trials that allow you to test their services without any financial commitment.

Identity Theft Is on the Rise

Recent reports indicate a growing concern regarding identity theft. Incidents of credit card fraud, loan fraud, and benefits fraud are alarmingly prevalent. In fact, according to the FTC, identity theft cases in the US grew from over 650,000 to 1.1 million between 2019 and 2022.

This trend can largely be attributed to the increasing digitalization of our lives, which has resulted in numerous data breaches. These breaches have exposed the personal information of countless individuals, enabling criminals and ID thieves to take advantage of them.

Other Identity Theft Protection Services We Reviewed

Beyond the identity theft protection services discussed above, we’ve also researched and compiled a list of other brands that may interest you. Check out this list of identity theft services to gain insight into different pricing options, types of reports, and features offered across the board:

Experian - Best for dark web surveillance

Identity Defense - Best for affordable basic ID theft protection

ReliaShield - Best for family plans and free child coverage

GOFreeCredit - Best for three-bureau credit monitoring and credit alerts

Avira - Best online security tools for Mac users

Credit Karma - Best for free credit report monitoring

Self Financial - Best for building credit

Stop Identity Thieves in Their Tracks

Investing in an online identity protection service is a highly effective way to prevent online identity theft. However, it’s essential to acknowledge that no identity is entirely safe in the digital age. That’s why features like identity resolution services and ID theft insurance provide added peace of mind to those seeking extra protection. 

Choose the most robust anti-ID theft tool within your budget to ensure your online safety. Even a basic or free credit monitoring service can go a long way in hindering identity thieves.

Erin Donaghue - Top10 Writer
Erin Donaghue is a criminal and social justice reporter, with an MA in journalism and over a decade of experience reporting and editing for various news outlets. In addition to, Erin's work has been featured in publications such as the Washington Post, USA Today,, and Huffington Post.