CNN Money announced in 2014 that every two seconds, someone becomes a victim of identity fraud. Since then, USA Today commented that identity theft complaints have risen 47% since 2014. It’s becoming clear that it’s no longer possible for us to ignore this threat, but what can we do about it? There are plenty of services available to protect your identity, and here is an overview of the services you can purchase with Identity Guard.
Identity Guard was created nearly two decades ago by Intersections, Inc., one of the most reliable companies for identity theft protection services. The various services offered by Identity Guard include Essentials, Gold, Total Protection, Platinum, and kID Sure. Here's a look at each tier.
Identity Guard® Essentials
Essentials is Identity Guard’s cheapest plan at $8.99 and it is perfect for helping protect your Social Security Number, identity, and more. With this tier, you’ll receive:
- Alerts if your social security is detected among thousands of databases
- Monitoring for numerous known black market websites, secret chat rooms, and underground forums
- Notification if certain changes are made to your credit file and/or public information, such as an address change or an application for a new credit card using your identity
- Access to $1 million in identity theft insurance to cover losses*
- Identity Guard’s ID Vault Password Protection, which securely encrypts and stores your usernames, passwords, and credit card information in one place
In addition to these services, all tiers of Identity Guard services offer access to $2,000 in emergency cash from your accounts should your wallet or purse becomes lost or stolen, access to highly trained experts, and assistance through email, website, and phone.
A great benefit of Identity Guard Essentials is the ability to try it for 30 days for free. Try out the service, and if you don’t like it, you can choose to cancel. If you do decide to remain a subscriber, you’ll pay just $8.99 per month afterward.
Identity Guard® Total Protection®
As you move into the next tier, you will receive even more protection. For $16.99, not only will Identity Guard help protect your identity, but also your credit. With Identity Guard’s Total Protection plan, you’ll receive all the benefits of the Gold plan and:
- Detection of certain address changes on your accounts
- Credit monitoring with the three major credit reporting agencies (Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion)
- Quarterly credit report updates to track your credit score over time**
- Alerts if your public record information changes
- PC protection with encryption software and antivirus software
It’s very clear that for $16.99, you receive a myriad of services that are designed to provide you complete credit protection each quarter from the three major credit reporting companies. Total Protection also revs up by giving you PC defense, which is incredibly important if you find yourself inputting personal information on your computer that you don't want anyone else to discover.
Like Identity Guard Essentials, signing up for Total Protection is free for the first 30 days, then $16.99 per month afterwards.
Identity Guard® Platinum
Identity Guard Platinum is the final and top tier for this identity protection company. With this plan, you’ll receive all of the services offered with Total Protection and more for $22.99. Some of the additional services included with Platinum include:
- Monitoring for your social security number, identity, and all public records
- Alerts if certain changes occur to your personal information, such as a credit card account opening in your name.
- Access to your account via Identity Guard’s mobile app
- Credit report updates from all three major credit reporting bureaus
- Monthly credit score updates
Monthly credit score updates are incredibly important for anyone who wants to protect their identity. The first step to stopping identity theft is realizing that something is going on. By getting updates every month, you have the ability to stop criminals before they’re able to do damage. Additionally, it’s an excellent way to help improve your score or just keep track of how you’re doing.
If Platinum seems like a great deal to you, you’ll be happy to know that you can try this service free for 30 days.
You can find a more in-depth review of Identity Guard Platinum here.
Identity Guard® for Kids
Kids under the age of 18 are 51 times more likely to have their identity stolen, and even worse, after a sample of 40,000 children, studies showed that over 10% of those children had their identity stolen. Identity Guard’s protection for children, referred to as kID Sure, helps to monitor your child's identity for $5.00 per month and can be added to one of the other Identity Guard plans. This additional feature includes:
- A footprint report and analysis of your child
- Monitoring of public records and social security number
- Alerts if an account is created in your kid's name
- Personal recovery assistance
It can be hard to protect your child, but kID Sure helps you take care of your child’s future. Additionally with this plan, you’ll receive unlimited toll-free customer service and prompt monitoring alerts.
*ID 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.
**The scores you receive with Identity Guard are provided for educational purposes to help you understand your credit. They are calculated using the information contained in your Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion credit files. Lenders use many different credit scoring systems, and the scores you receive with Identity Guard are not the same scores used by lenders to evaluate your credit. Credit scores are provided by CreditXpert based on date from the credit reporting bureaus.