In a Nutshell
- 3-bureau credit monitoring
- Monthly credit reports
- Score simulator online tool
- Basic plan doesn’t offer much identity theft protection
- Not available for New York residents
A brilliant solution for:
- Anyone who wants to keep tabs on or improve their credit score and report
- People who want to have tools to make smarter financial decisions
- Those looking for family identity theft protection plans
How does it work?
MyFICO operates like most other identity theft protection services. After you sign up and select a plan (all done online, of course), you will put in your identifying information and answer a few questions to prove your identity.
After that, MyFICO will scan its databases to see if your personal information is mentioned anywhere. Once the scan is complete, you’ll receive an in-depth report about your credit and where you can improve your identity security.
From there, MyFICO will regularly scan and continuously monitor your personal information for any suspicious activity or changes. In the event that something is triggered, you will be notified in 1 of 3 ways: via the mobile app, SMS, or email, whichever you prefer. Examples of an alert trigger include when a new account is opened in your name, when a new address is listed under your name, or when a new public record listing shows up.
One of the most important alerts you’ll receive from MyFICO is if a credit inquiry is made on your information. This is important because it could be a sign that someone is trying to use your personal data to take out a loan. Many of the top name brand identity theft protection specialists do not offer this basic alert, so it’s good to know that MyFICO does.
What does this service watch out for?
MyFICO has many of the usual services such as dark web surveillance and Social Security number monitoring, but its strength is even more apparent in the areas of credit score and reporting. For one thing, the Ultimate plan gives you access to multiple FICO scores (yes, you actually have several), including the FICO Score 8 which is the most commonly used credit score looked at by the majority of lenders.
What’s even more impressive is that MyFICO sends you notifications if your credit score changes. This is something that most identity theft providers do not do, despite it being an extremely important early warning sign of fraud. MyFICO gets big points for this feature.
MyFICO also offers a detailed analysis of your credit report known as risk assessment. This feature is particularly helpful in showing you what’s wrong with your current credit behavior so that you can fix problems and avoid major issues that lead to identity theft and fraud. Again, another major identity theft preventative measure that not enough protection plans offer.
Here are some of the things that MyFICO identity theft packages cover:
- Credit monitoring of TransUnion, Experian, and Equifax
- Credit alerts telling you whenever your score changes
- Quarterly, monthly, or annual reports depending on the plan you purchase
- Dark Web surveillance
- Public records monitoring
- Payday loan monitoring
- SSN monitoring
- Financial account takeover monitoring
Note that not all of these services are available for all plans, particularly the Basics 1B plan. See the pricing section below for additional details about which features are covered under which plans.
Another super useful tool is the MyFICO score simulator. This actually lets you see in real-time how an action will affect your credit score. Let’s say, for example, you want to take out a loan, but you don't know how it'll affect your credit score. You can plug the numbers into the simulator and see exactly what will happen to your score. This is an excellent way to help people make smarter financial decisions, encourage them to make debt payments more often, and use caution before taking actions that will affect their scores negatively.
Recovery services - what can MyFICO do if my identity is stolen?
While the purpose of an identity theft protection service is to help you avoid this devastating occurrence, no service is foolproof. Which is why it’s good to know that MyFICO is there for you when the worst case scenario happens as well. Here’s how it will help you:
ID theft insurance
As with most other professional-grade identity theft protection services, MyFICO offers $1 million identity theft insurance. If your identity is stolen, you will be reimbursed the costs that you incurred while restoring your identity. That includes travel expenses, lost wages, legal advice and costs, document replacement, child care, and other personal expenses. It also covers any fraudulent charges that may have been made to your accounts. There are limitations for each cost field, though, so read the fine print carefully. For example, you can get up to $10,000 reimbursed for unauthorized electronic funds transfers, while forgery or data breach will cover up to the full $1M.
24/7 customer service
MyFICO offers 24/7 identity theft restoration coverage. That means at any time of day or night you can receive assistance in recovering your identity in the event that it has been stolen or used fraudulently. You’ll get your own manager who will work with you privately on your case and see it through straight until the end of the process.
Lost wallet replacement assistance
A MyFICO representative will help you take care of all the follow-up steps you need to go through in the event that your wallet is lost or stolen. These include replacing identity cards, like your driver’s license, and canceling credit cards before anyone has a chance to use them.
How easy is it to use?
Like most identity theft services, MyFICO is a set and forget service. After you input your information and set up your account (just a few minutes in total), you’re off the hook. MyFICO will take care of the rest.
MyFICO offers 4 plan—3 for individuals and 1 for families—which covers 2 adults and up to 10 children. It’s nice that they have a family plan because it can get very expensive if you have to pay a new subscription fee for each member of your family. Here’s what you’ll pay and what you’ll get for each plan:
As you can see, the Basics 1B plan isn’t very impressive for identity theft protection, which is why we recommend you opt for the 3B or the 3B+ plans if you’re serious about ID theft protection. These two plans have a ton of security features to keep your private data safe, more than most other providers. For example, the 3B+ plan offers 3-bureau monthly credit reports, score updates, and risk assessment.
Help & Support
MyFICO has 24/7 customer support, so you’re never stuck without someone to turn to. There are phone hours from Mon - Fri 6am to 6pm Pacific Time and Sat 7am to 4pm Pacific Time at the toll-free number: 1-800-319-4433 for standard questions too. You can also send an email via the online contact form or browse the community forum and FAQ section.
MyFICO provides you with a ton of credit reporting and monitoring features that many of the other services of its ilk do not. That’s why this is the best option for you if you are looking to keep an eye on your credit score (example: if you are considering a loan in the near future, if you had a messy divorce and are nervous about your ex taking action against you, etc.).
MyFICO is also a great option if you are looking to improve your credit. With tools like the online score simulator and risk assessment, MyFICO gives you the right tools and information you need to rebuild your credit back to the top.