Identity theft is not something that you would ever want to experience. Your identity and information can be stolen and used in so many ways, and it can mean that you need to constantly monitor an overwhelming amount of life aspects to prevent it.
It can feel like a helpless cause, and you can find yourself wasting a lot of time trying to prevent something that may not even happen to you. That’s where companies like Identity Guard and IdentityForce come in. These services will do the hard monitoring work for you so that you will never be caught unaware by identity theft.
With so many services to choose from, you may be wondering which is the better fit for you. That’s what we will aim to find out in this overview, as we look at the various benefits and drawbacks of each service to help you decide.
- Identity Theft: A Breakdown
- Identity Guard Vs IdentityForce Overview
- Identity Guard Vs IdentityForce: Features Comparison
- Identity Guard Vs IdentityForce: Pricing
- Identity Guard Vs IdentityForce Ease Of Use And Setup
- Identity Guard Pros And Cons
- IdentityForce Pros And Cons
- Identity Guard Vs IdentityForce: Which Is Right For You?
- FAQs: Identity Guard Vs IdentityForce
Identity Theft: A Breakdown
What Is Identity Theft?
Identity theft can take many different forms, and there are many ways that it can happen. Essentially, it entails someone using your identity or personal information for their own illicit purposes. They could use your information to drain your bank account, gain a loan, or in some cases make it look like you’ve said and done horrible things to defame you.
It could happen because of carelessness where you accidentally grant sensitive information to a scammer, or it can happen because someone hacks into your network and steals the information for themselves. These are just two broad examples of how it can occur, but they are far from the only ones.
As we have seen in this article on how identity theft can prevent you from buying a house, it can have very real implications apart from money being stolen.
In the past, we have looked at the states that have the highest and lowest instances of identity theft to give you an idea of how widespread it is.
How Common Is Identity Theft?
Identity theft may not be something you hear about all that much, but it is a lot more common than you may think. The statistics vary from year to year, but the numbers range in the millions annually. This is just in America, and many millions more fall victim to identity theft in its many forms across the globe.
It’s something that everyone is susceptible to, and it can happen at pretty much any time, even if you’re usually quite careful.
We have covered the topic of how common identity theft is in much more detail in the linked article, so we highly recommend reading that for more information.
How Can You Prevent Identity Theft From Occurring?
The best way to protect yourself from identity theft is to be constantly vigilant. You need to be careful about granting information to the wrong people and companies, and you also need to ensure that you have decent protections set in place.
You can never be 100% safe from identity theft, as all it takes is a simple slip-up for someone to get the information they need to steal your identity. This constant need for vigilance can get quite overwhelming, so an identity protection service such as the ones we will look at today can make things much easier.
Are Identity Theft Protection Services Worth It?
As we’ve touched on already, protecting yourself from identity theft can be a large and involving undertaking. We have also seen that identity theft can be rather common. Therefore, you can either put in the work to be constantly vigilant all of the time, or you can use an identity theft protection service to look out for you.
These services have many great features and benefits that can help protect you from identity theft without you having to do much. Not only that, but both services offer insurance and remuneration if you face damages from identity theft.
With the growing threat of identity theft, we feel that an identity protection service is well worth adding to your regular security measures.
If you would like to learn more about why you need to protect yourself from identity theft, you can read this article showcasing 5 compelling reasons why you need identity theft protection.
Identity Guard Vs IdentityForce Overview
When it comes to choosing an identity protection service for yourself, it can be hard to know what to choose. Both Identity Guard and IdentityForce may look quite similar at a cursory glance, as they offer many of the same benefits.
It comes down to the smaller details, as each one does have its own unique aspects to consider. We will go over all of these details in this review, and that will help you decide which service is right for you personally.
Identity Guard Vs IdentityForce: Features Comparison
Monitoring and Activity Alerts
The main thing these services share in common is that their most basic function is providing monitoring and activity alerts. This means that they will both monitor different aspects of the internet and your credit activity for anything suspicious that could denote fraud.
Then, you will receive a direct alert so that you can look into the breach and take action where necessary. They can potentially differ when it comes to the kinds of monitoring they offer, so in the next few sections, we will break it down and compare the monitoring services they offer.
Dark Web Monitoring
The dark web can be a blessing and a curse, as while it can provide unparalleled access and anonymity to you, it provides the same benefits to thieves and scammers. The dark web is not used by many everyday people, but that doesn’t mean your information isn’t there.
You could have your information circulating on the dark web and never know it! That’s why dark web monitoring is so important, and it’s one aspect where we have a tie between Identity Guard and IdentityForce.
Both services offer dark web monitoring throughout all their tiers, so this is one aspect where you’ll be covered no matter which you choose.
When it comes to credit monitoring, it gets a little more complicated. Both services offer some kind of credit monitoring, but not across all tiers. Let’s start with Identity Guard.
They offer various forms of credit monitoring, but you will not have any credit monitoring on their lowest Value tier. The middle Total tier does add 3 bureau credit monitoring and a monthly credit score*. Finally, the highest Ultra tier offers credit and debit card monitoring, Experian credit lock, and a 3-Bureau annual credit report along with the credit monitoring we mentioned in the middle tier.
When it comes to IdentityForce, you have two tiers. These are UltraSecure and then UltraSecure +Credit. As the name implies, credit monitoring is mainly available with the second tier, as the regular one only offers bank and credit card activity monitoring.
The higher tier offers these and others such as 3 bureau credit monitoring, reports, and scores. You will also have access to a credit score tracker and simulator.
Basically, in either case, you will need to subscribe to the higher tiers if you wish to have credit monitoring.
Postal Address Monitoring
When it comes to postal address monitoring, we have another tie as neither service offers this kind of monitoring.
Public Records Monitoring
Public records monitoring is again not offered by either service. IdentityForce does offer court records monitoring with both tiers, however.
Social Media Monitoring
Social media monitoring is very important when it comes to identity theft protection, as this is an area where many people let their guard down and may open themselves up to attacks.
This area is one where IdentityForce has a slight advantage. Both services offer social media monitoring, but Identity Guard only offers it with its highest Ultra tier. IdentityForce offers this monitoring across both tiers, however.
Sex Offender Monitoring
Sex offender monitoring will make sure that registered sex offenders are not using your information for their own purposes. This is another case where both services offer it, but IdentityForce has a small leg up.
Identity Guard again only features this monitoring with their Ultra tier, whereas IdentityForce has it across both tiers.
Home Title Monitoring
Home title monitoring will look out for activity that may signify that someone is fraudulently claiming ownership of your house to gain money or large loans against the property.
This time, the lead goes to Identity Guard, as they offer home title monitoring with their Ultra tier. They also offer it as a standalone service.
This is one form of monitoring that IdentityForce does not offer.
Insurance And Compensation
The idea of identity theft protection is to prevent incidences of identity theft, but it can still happen. If it does manage to hit you despite your protection, you may find yourself faced with financial damages.
Having insurance against damages incurred by identity theft is really important, and we’re happy to report another tie between both companies. Across all tiers, you will have up to $1 million in insurance** and compensation if you do get hit by damages resulting from identity theft.
2FA For Enhanced Security
2FA (or two-factor authentication) basically adds an extra layer of security to your login process. In addition to your regular password or code, you will also receive another code accessed by sms, email or text that you will need to enter.
Identity Guard does not feature 2FA, but IdentityForce offers it across both tiers, giving them the advantage in this case.
If you run into any issues or need to report any breaches for escalation, you will need to be able to contact each company easily. Luckily, both have a few ways that you can easily contact them.
Identity Guard’s contact page has options to call or email them, and they will get in touch with you within 48 hours. All of their customer support is available 24/7 and all of our agents are based in the U.S.
Identity Guard Vs IdentityForce: Pricing
We have seen that both services have many forms of monitoring and other services that can help to keep you safe from identity theft. Anyone considering these options will naturally want to know how much each plan costs, as the hit to your budget is certainly something to consider.
Identity Guard Options
As we mentioned, each service has different tiers that offer different prices and feature sets. First, we will begin with Identity Guard. They have three tiers: Value, Total, and Ultra. You can access their product page for a thorough breakdown of all features across the tiers, but we will break it down.
You will further have the option between an individual and a family plan. The individual plan will cover 1 person, whereas the family plan will cover 5 adults and unlimited kids across all tiers.
The pricing is as follows:
Value Total Ultra
Individual $6.67/Mo $13.99/Mo $19.99/Mo
Family $10.00/Mo $19.99/Mo $26.67/Mo
It’s worth bearing in mind that these prices are if you go for an annual plan, and the pricing increases if you pay monthly.
IdentityForce’s product page shows the two tiers that are available. These are as follows:
UltraSecure $17.99/Mo per member per month
UltraSecure+Credit $23.99/Mo per member per month
Identity Guard definitely offers more options, especially for those that have larger families and kids. It can work out to be much cheaper in this regard.
However, you can contact IdentityForce directly to enquire about setting up a family plan that works for you.
Identity Guard Vs IdentityForce Ease Of Use And Setup
Setting up and using these services has been designed to be as easy and hassle-free as possible. This is another area where both companies are pretty comparable. When you sign up, you will provide your information so that your account can be set up.
Once it’s all setup, the idea is that you don’t have to worry about it after that. The various forms of monitoring will begin, and you will be alerted to any breaches or instances of your information turning up where you don’t want it to.
If there are any alerts, you can contact the company you’re signed up with and they will guide you through the necessary next steps after that.
Identity Guard Pros And Cons
Throughout this overview, we have seen that Identity Guard has many different features that make them an excellent choice for identity protection. Depending on the tiers you choose, you will have protection from pretty much every major avenue that makes you vulnerable to identity theft attempts.
They also offer many different plans to suit your particular situation, so you won’t be paying for features you don’t need. It can also work out to be much cheaper to go with Identity Guard if you want to cover an entire family, even if you go for their higher tiers.
Perhaps the biggest disadvantage of Identity Guard is that you have to sign up to their highest tiers to get all benefits. It’s great to have the choice to have the features you need the most, but some of the most important features are locked behind the highest tiers of the service.
They are also lacking a few features that IdentityForce does offer, but how big of a deal this is will depend on your particular needs.
Overall, we do think that to get the most out of Identity Guard you should definitely consider signing up for the highest tier.
IdentityForce Pros And Cons
IdentityForce has a lot to offer you, and there are even some features they offer that are not included with Identity Guard. Perhaps the biggest advantage to IdentityForce is that fewer features are locked behind the higher tier, so you potentially have access to more features even on their most basic tier.
Overall, we feel they offer great value for money given how many features are offered for the price.
While we feel the value of the service is pretty good, it can work out to be more expensive if you have a family to cover. You have to pay per individual, and that can start adding up even on the lower tiers.
If you wish to sign up for a family plan, you have to go through the extra steps of contacting them and asking them to sort it out, which is a bit inconvenient. The lack of clear options from the get-go is one of the biggest drawbacks to this service when compared to Identity Guard.
Identity Guard Vs IdentityForce: Which Is Right For You?
That brings us to the big question; which service is right for you? It’s not so simple to answer that question, as we have seen that either service is a great choice for identity theft protection. You can’t go wrong with either one, but each one is suited to different needs.
We would recommend Identity Guard to people with families or several adults that would like to be covered, as their family plans end up being cheaper and you can cover as many children as you need.
IdentityForce may be better suited to individuals who want slightly more comprehensive monitoring at a decent price.
Overall, it comes down to you as an individual, and we highly recommend checking out the features pages of each service to decide which ones you think would be most applicable to you.
FAQs: Identity Guard Vs IdentityForce
Is IdentityForce Worth It?
We definitely feel that IdentityForce is a worthwhile service that can keep you safe from identity theft along with offering other great features. We especially think it’s worth it for individuals looking for identity theft protection.
Is Identity Guard Worth It?
Similarly, we feel that Identity Guard is an excellent service when it comes to identity theft protection. You have lots of options to choose from, and there is excellent value offered for families that have multiple people to monitor.
How Should You Respond To The Theft Of Your Identity?
If you’re signed up to one of these identity theft protection services, you should contact them immediately if your identity has been stolen. You should then contact any relevant authorities as well as your bank so that you can temporarily freeze your accounts to prevent unauthorized actions.
For more detailed information on the subject, check out this article on how to report identity theft.
How Long Does It Take The IRS To Investigate Identity Theft?
To fully complete an investigation, it can take the IRS between 120-180 days depending on how busy they are and how complex the situation is.
What Is The Most Important Way To Fight Identity Theft?
There are many ways to fight identity theft, but it basically comes down to being vigilant. You can identify identity theft by spotting anomalies or unusual activity with your information and accounts. This can be done yourself, but using one of the services we have covered in this overview makes it so much easier and more comprehensive.
What Happens If My SSN Is On The Dark Web?
If you find that your social security number is on the dark web, this can be a huge problem. It means that this sensitive information is available for anyone to see and use, so you should definitely contact authorities such as the IRS and Federal Trade Commission to take things further.
Can I Lock My SSN?
You can request a lock on your SSN by contacting the Social Security Administration.
How Much Is Identity Guard Per Month?
This is covered earlier in the review, but you can expect to pay a minimum of $6.67 per month to a maximum of $26.67 per month depending on the tier you choose.
How Much is IdentityForce Per Month?
IdentityForce’s pricing starts at $17.99 per month per person per month and goes up to $23.99 per month per person. They also have more plans depending on how many individuals there are and whether you sign up for an annual or monthly plan.
Identity theft can be a serious problem, and it’s definitely worth it to protect yourself from it. We definitely feel that the best way to do this is by using a service such as Identity Guard or IdentityForce. As we have seen in this overview, each one has its pros and cons, but both are excellent choices in the fight against identity theft.
We highly recommend considering the service that best suits you so that you can protect you and your family from the dangers of identity theft.
* 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 Equifax 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.