The Best ID Theft Protection Services of 2019

Scott HirschByScott HirschOct. 17, 2019

It is estimated that every 2 seconds someone becomes a victim of identity theft, and in 2018 alone, 16.7 million people in the US fell victim to an attack, which totaled more than $16 billion, according to a report by Javelin. The reasons are myriad, from the rise in online shopping, to ever-increasing data breaches and malware attacks. 

Whatever the reasons, the trend is a worrying one. Luckily, ID theft protection services can provide a minimal-investment opportunity to monitor online activity performed in your name, thereby catching ID theft before it can seriously affect you. Here’s a look at the best ID theft protection services of the year:

Full-spectrum protection
Norton antivirus users
VPN and torrent users
Internet banking
ID theft and PC maintenance
Frequent credit reports
Those on a budget
$7.50per month
$8.99per month
$14.95per month
$17.95per month
$19.99per month
$19.99per month
$6.99per month
No
60-day money-back guarantee
30 days
14 days
Free 1-time diagnostic
No
No
Yes
Yes
N/A
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
No
Yes
No
Yes
Yes
$1 million
$1 million
$1 million
$1 million
$1 million
$1 million
$1 million
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
No
Yes
No

In-Depth Reviews of Our Top ID Theft Protection Picks

  • 1

    Identity Guard

    Effortless AI-backed data protection
    Identity Guard
    • Best forFull-spectrum protection
    • Starting price$7.50per month
    • Free trialNo

    Identity Guard’s marquee feature is the IBM Watson technology. This cutting-edge AI tool constantly scans billions of data points across the internet to pinpoint unusual activity, resulting in intelligent, 24/7 protection for families and individuals.  

    Watson may be Identity Guard’s most impressive feature, but it’s far from the only one. The company offers 3 solid packages that all include Dark Web monitoring, risk management reports, and anti-phishing apps, as well as some unique tools with the more extensive plans. The advanced package, for example, includes 3-bureau credit reports and a social insight report. Family plans notably include cyberbullying alerts for social media. 

    Identity Guard is easy to use, and thanks to the Watson technology practically autonomous. Users will find the online identity dashboard and dedicated mobile apps a breeze to use.

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

    LifeLock

    Full-spectrum protection from Norton
    LifeLock
    • Best forNorton antivirus users
    • Starting price$8.99per month
    • Free trial60-day money-back guarantee

    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.

    Pros
    • Reimbursement up to $1 million
    • Antivirus and protection from cyber threats
    • 60-day money-back guarantee
    Cons
    • Only worth it if you want Norton 360
    • Pricing can be confusing
    Read LifeLock Full Review
  • 3

    Panda Security

    AI-assisted protection from a pro
    Panda Security
    • Best forVPN and torrent users
    • Starting price$14.95per month
    • Free trial30 days

    A well-known company amongst internet security enthusiasts, Panda offers an ID theft service that fits right into its suite of VPNs and antivirus software. 

    Panda has its sign-up process down to a science, and unlike others in the field, its ID theft monitoring begins the instant you’re signed up. You’ll receive fraud monitoring with rapid smart alerts if your financial info or credit card details are are sold online. Panda also offers SSN tracking as well as bank and credit card activity checks on withdrawals or transfers that exceed amounts you can set yourself. 

    Panda offers an admirable customer service policy with multiple avenues of communication. Customers have access to a 24/7 premium support line as well as chat and email. There’s also online contact forms and active resources on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

    Pros
    • Monitoring begins immediately after signing up
    • Customized alerts and notifications
    • Strong customer support teams
    Cons
    • Only 1 plan available
    • May conflict with security software from other providers
    Read Panda Security Full Review
  • 4

    IdentityForce

    Experience-backed solutions and security
    IdentityForce
    • Best forInternet banking
    • Starting price$17.95per month
    • Free trial14 days

    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.

    Pros
    • More than 40 years of experience
    • Medical ID fraud protection
    • 50-point member manifesto for customers
    Cons
    • Need to contact CS for family plan info
    • Pricier than other services
    Read IdentityForce Full Review
  • 5

    MyCleanID

    A proactive approach to ID theft protection
    MyCleanID
    • Best forID theft and PC maintenance
    • Starting price$19.99per month
    • Free trialFree 1-time diagnostic

    MyCleanID provides real-time protection with 3-bureau credit monitoring with up to a $1 million guarantee. The process is easy and within minutes of signing up you’ll receive access to your credit and FICO scores through a smart, clean dashboard that allows you to keep tabs on private info and alerts. 

    MyCleanID’s monitoring services offer comprehensive protection that extends beyond standard features to include telephone and driver’s license protection as well as PC protection via the service’s privacy management software. The last is a unique feature that performs a deep scan on your computer and allows you to erase usernames and passwords, and schedule regular cleanings. This combination of PC care and ID theft offers users the benefit of proaction and control that can prevent breaches and help each user sharpen their personal online habits.   

    MyCleanID only offers one plan, but it’s relatively extensive and includes 24/7 live support.

    Pros
    • Up to $2,000 lost wallet protection
    • Unique PC protection software fosters proactive online safety
    • 24/7 US-based support
    Cons
    • Need to pay 1-time activation fee
    • Only 1 plan available
    Read MyCleanID Full Review
  • 6

    MyFICO

    Steady protection from FICO creators
    MyFICO
    • Best forFrequent credit reports
    • Starting price$19.99per month
    • Free trialNo

    The consumer division of Fair Isaac, the creator of the FICO score used by lenders, MyFICO boasts some serious pedigree. It’s the standard-bearer of credit scores used by the 3 major credit bureaus, and with its own consumer-facing ID theft service, it offers solid ID theft protection that combines frequent reporting and far-reaching monitoring. 

    MyFICO offers 3 packages with quarterly and monthly credit report updates. All of the plans are backed by $1 million theft insurance  and 24/7 fraud resolution, while the advanced and premier plans include dark web and SSN monitoring. Customers are privy to one of the most dependable response teams in the industry with 24/7 support as well as toll-free and email options.

    Pros
    • Offered by the creator of FICO scores
    • Monthly credit reports
    • 24/7 support
    Cons
    • No free trial
    • On the expensive side
    Read MyFICO Full Review
  • 7

    Identity IQ

    Steady monitoring and frequent reports
    Identity IQ
    • Best forThose on a budget
    • Starting price$6.99per month
    • Free trialNo

    IdentityIQ is a perennial favorite among ID theft services, and for good reason. Even its most basic plan includes a solid line-up of monitoring features, and as you go up from there you find many perks that distinguish it from others in the field. 

    For one thing, IdentityIQ offers 12 credit reports a year with its Secure Max, which far surpasses the competition and creates the feeling of extra security. Sign-up is quick and requires some basic personal information, including name and Social Security number. From there you get monthly 3-bureau credit reports, Dark Web monitoring, credit score tracking, all backed with $1 million in protection. Other impressive features include synthetic ID theft protection and a credit score simulator. 

    In total, IdentityIQ offers 4 plans that range in cost from an affordable $6.99 per month for the basic to $29.99 for the Secure Max package.

    Pros
    • Monthly credit reports with the Select Max plan
    • Extensive monitoring and protection
    • 4 affordable plans to choose from
    Cons
    • No free trial
    • No live CS chat on website
    Read Identity IQ Full Review

Is an ID Theft Protection Tool Worth the Investment?

If you’re looking for a firm layer of security to make you feel safer while online shopping, paying your bills online, sharing personal information on social media, and more, then yes—an ID protection service is definitely worth the investment. While some people may see these solutions as “nice-to-have” rather than “must-have,” they might be interested in learning that many of them offer free trial periods of up to 30 days, or discounts on your first annual subscription. 

How Do These Tools Work? 

The best ID theft protection services on the market utilize unique data and advanced technologies to monitor credit card transactions, the Dark Web, social media, and more. Their goal is to immediately detect when your information is stolen, offered for sale, or used fraudulently, in order to mitigate the damage of ID attacks as much as possible. Once you are alerted about an attack, these services will help restore your identity, reimburse you for stolen funds, and offer expert support around the clock. 

Here are some features and capabilities offered by the best ID protection services on the market today:

Monitor & Detect
Alert
Restore
Credit card transactions
Detect changes in your credit score
Identity restoration specialists
Dark Web
Be alerted when your information is stolen or offered for sale
Up to $1M reimbursement of stolen funds
Social media
Learn of social media activity using your name or photos
Coverage for lawyers and experts
Court recordings & bookings
Learn of crimes reported in your name
Lost wallet protection
The US Postal Service
Know if your mail has been redirected
24/7 member support
SSN
Find out about addresses associated with your Social Security number

Banks
Detect attempts to take over your account or loans taken in your name

Sex offenders
Learn if an offender moves into your neighborhood

Driver’s license
Learn if someone uses your driver’s license fraudulently

What is Tax-Related ID Theft?

People who illegally obtain personal information such as a Social Security number can file fraudulent tax returns to the IRS. According to an IRS page dedicated to tax fraud, actions such as these can go undetected until an E-file attempt is made and rejected because of a previous (fraudulent) filing. The IRS may reach out if they’ve identified a suspicious return, though it’s best to stay on top of the problem. 

As a result of increasing tax-related ID theft, the IRS partnered with representatives from tax firms, payroll processors, and state tax administrators to address the problem. Efforts include awareness campaigns to keep civilians informed and up-to-date with best practices. Americans are advised to keep their Social Security cards in safe locations, use security software and strong passwords when submitting sensitive personal information online, and always securing their tax records.  

What is Medical ID Theft?

A less-common but no-less severe form of ID theft, medical ID theft occurs when your personal information is used to procure medical services or medication. Though information can be sold and acquired on the Dark Web to be used by complete strangers, other instances of medical theft have occurred with medical providers submitting excessive or even fabricated claims to insurance providers. For that reason, the standard practices of guarding your information and protecting your information online may not be enough, and experts also recommend checking your health insurance records once a year for possible discrepancies. 

Scott HirschByScott HirschNov. 19, 2019
Scott is a content writer who has worked as a special education teacher, lifestyle writer, and researcher. He enjoys literature and travel and believes that a sense of wonder and curiosity is the key to living a fulfilled life.