Identity theft and fraud protection for your finances, personal info, and devices.
Which Identity Theft Protection Service Is Right for You?
Identity theft is the fastest growing crime in America — and it’s only getting worse as cybercriminals find new ways to scam their victims.
According to the latest data from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) [*]:
Over 4 million Americans reported being victims of identity theft and fraud in the first 9 months of 2023 alone, with an astonishing $6+ billion in total losses.
Even worse, more than 50% of identity theft victims are repeat victims, making identity theft protection more important than ever.
If you’re looking into identity theft protection options, you’ve probably come across two of today’s leading providers: Identity Guard and IdentityForce.
In this guide, we’ll explain the differences between the two providers so that you can better understand which one might work best for you and your family.
What’s the Difference Between Identity Guard and IdentityForce?
Identity Guard and IdentityForce are both identity theft protection service providers that offer similar levels of protection against a range of personal security threats.
Yet, while both companies offer similar features and services, there are unique differences that you need to be aware of when choosing which one is right for you.
Note: To do the most even analysis, we’re comparing each company’s highest-priced plans — Identity Guard Ultra and IdentityForce UltraSecure+Credit.
The bottom line: Identity Guard provides fast fraud alerts, award-winning identity theft protection, and more protection for families. Secure your identity (and finances) with Identity Guard today and receive 33% off your membership.
Identity Guard Overview: What’s Included & Pros and Cons
As one of the earliest providers of identity theft protection services, Identity Guard has spearheaded the consumer protection and fraud prevention industry for decades. Over the years, as many as 38 million people have benefited from Identity Guard’s protective innovations that tackle ever-changing security threats.
While Identity Guard used to be powered by IBM Watson’s artificial intelligence (AI), the company recently joined forces with Aura to provide modern identity theft protection and digital security to more Americans.
Today, Identity Guard remains among the most renowned identity protection providers, with over 2,000 five-star reviews on Trustpilot [*].
Here’s how Identity Guard keeps you safe:
- Award-winning identity monitoring and alerts. Identity Guard monitors your most sensitive information, including your Social Security number (SSN) — across the Dark Web, online sites, and public records — to see if criminals are using it. For example, you’ll receive alerts in near real-time if your data is leaked in a data breach, if someone uses your identity during a crime, or if scammers try to change your home title or address. Identity Guard was rated the Best Identity Theft Protection Service of 2022 by Forbes Advisor.
- Three-bureau credit monitoring with fast fraud alerts. Identity Guard monitors your bank, investment, and credit accounts at all three major credit bureaus (Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion). If it finds any suspicious activity, you’ll get an alert in near real-time.
- One-click Experian credit lock. To protect your credit from scammers, you can lock and unlock your Experian credit file with a single tap from the Identity Guard app. You’ll also get a monthly credit score and annual credit reports with the three major credit bureaus to help keep on top of your credit score.
- Social media monitoring. Modern identity thieves often target or impersonate their victims over social media. Identity Guard can alert you if someone is impersonating you on social media or attempting to take over your social media accounts.
- Powerful digital safety tools for online protection. For proactive protection against hackers, Identity Guard includes Safe Browsing tools that warn you if you’re entering fake or dangerous websites, as well as a secure password manager to keep your logins safe.
- $1,000,000 identity theft insurance on every plan. If the worst should happen, every adult member on your plan is covered for up to $1,000,000 in eligible losses due to identity theft.
- U.S.-based Fraud Resolution Specialists. Whether you have questions about your account or need help dealing with fraud (or suspected fraud), you can contact one of Identity Guard’s trained identity restoration specialists.
- Easy-to-use dashboard and web app. All of Identity Guard’s features are easy to access and use from a simple dashboard on your computer or mobile device.
Who should choose Identity Guard?
You should choose Identity Guard if:
- You want the best available fraud alerts and financial account monitoring. Identity Guard’s financial monitoring services cover your credit, bank accounts, 401K, investment accounts, debit and credit cards, and more. You’ll receive fraud alerts in near real-time.
- You’re looking after several family members. Identity Guard’s services are designed to include coverage for spouses, children, and elderly family members — so your protections can go as far as you need them to.
- You’re seeking the best value for the price. Identity Guard plans are among the most budget-friendly (and trustworthy) options on the market.
- You want the peace of mind that comes with access to support from experienced Fraud Resolution Specialists.
How much does Identity Guard cost?
As with many services, Identity Guard’s annual plan options offer better value than month-to-month subscriptions. Here are Identity Guard’s annual plan prices as of January 2024 (using this special discount link):
- Value Plan: $6.67/month (individual) and $10/month (family)
- Total Plan: $13.33/month (individual) and $19.99/month (family)
- Ultra Plan: $19.99/month (individual) and $26.67/month (family)
All annual plan members are entitled to a 60-day money-back guarantee. Identity Guard’s pricing plans don’t increase after the first year, so you can expect the price at which you initially sign up to remain steady.
Is Identity Guard a reputable company?
In order for identity theft protection services to keep you safe, they need access to some of your most sensitive personal and financial information. This means it’s no small decision to choose a provider.
Since launching over 25 years ago, more than 38 million people have entrusted Identity Guard to protect their identities and families. The company also has some of the best reviews online, with an average 4.6-star rating on Trustpilot from close to 4,500 real reviewers.
Here’s what some customers had to say about Identity Guard [*]:
- Customer support that goes above and beyond: “By the end of the call, we felt like the weight of the world was off our shoulders.”
- Saved me thousands of dollars: “[My Identity Guard rep] got Bank of America's fraud group on the phone and within minutes they put the stolen money ($4,880.36) back into my account. If it were not for this intervention, who knows how long I would have been waiting for!”
- Step-by-step fraud resolution: “Identity guard emailed me about a suspicious account. After discussion we contacted the institution to report the fraud and Identity Guard walked me through all I would need to do to protect my identity and credit. This process was made easy by giving me step-by-step instructions on how to contact various institutions and law enforcement.”
IdentityForce Overview: What’s Included and Pros & Cons
IdentityForce is TransUnion’s in-house fraud protection service. Like Identity Guard, IdentityForce has been in the business for decades, boasting approximately 40 years of consumer fraud prevention and resolution.
IdentityForce is in good standing with its customer base, with generally high ratings on review websites like TrustPilot.
Here’s what you get with IdentityForce:
- Bank and credit monitoring services. IdentityForce offers alerts about changes to your credit report, new lines of credit, and new accounts or requests from lenders.
- Public record monitoring. Similar to Identity Guard, IdentityForce will check if your personal information is showing up on court records, sex offender registries, or other public records in which you wouldn’t expect your data to appear.
- Digital security tools. IdentityForce protects your devices from hackers with a virtual private network (VPN), and antimalware and anti-phishing software for PCs.
- Three-bureau credit monitoring and credit simulator. IdentityForce monitors your credit report with all three bureaus and also provides regular credit reports, credit scores, and access to a credit score simulator to help you create a credit plan.
- Junk mail removal. This service helps users remove their information from marketing databases where criminals and spammers can find it.
- Identity fraud insurance coverage up to $1 million. Unlike Identity Guard, IdentityForce’s insurance coverage can vary according to which plan you select.
- White Glove Fraud Resolution. IdentityForce’s 24/7 support can help you deal with instances of fraud, and walk you through the process of initiating a credit freeze.
Who should choose IdentityForce?
You should choose IdentityForce if:
- You think you’d benefit significantly from credit tracking and simulation tools. If credit monitoring and financial planning are your main priorities, IdentityForce’s credit simulation tool could be a bonus (however, you can get stand-alone credit simulators at significantly cheaper costs).
- You’re looking for more digital security features like a VPN and mobile device security. Although public information about these specific tools is limited, IdentityForce does advertise anti-phishing and anti-keylogging software, as well as a protective mobile app that’s compatible with iOS and Android.
- You don’t need coverage for more than two adults. IdentityForce only covers two adults per family plan.
How much does IdentityForce cost?
IdentityForce offers both family and individual plans:
- UltraSecure (individual): $17.99/month or $179.50 billed annually
- UltraSecure+Credit (individual): $23.95/month or $239.50 billed annually
Family plans cover two adults and unlimited children, including ChildWatch ID protection for children.
- UltraSecure (family): $24.90/month or $249/year
- UltraSecure+Credit (family): $35.90/month or $359/year
IdentityForce offers a 30-day free trial of its basic plan, but doesn’t provide a money-back guarantee for subscribers.
🎯 Related: The Best Identity Guard Alternatives of 2023 →
How To Choose Between Identity Guard and IdentityForce
Choosing the best identity theft protection services depends on your personal needs and the needs of your family.
For example, some households might already have certain security measures in place, like device protection in the form of VPN and antivirus software. But consumers who have little-to-no fraud or ID theft protection might benefit from an all-in-one provider that offers as many features as possible.
No matter where your needs fall, it’s important to understand the key fraud protection features that Identity Guard and IdentityForce offer, and how they compare.
Monitoring (identity, credit, and bank account)
When it comes to monitoring, more is more.
Ideally, you should have monitoring tools in place for as much of your personal data as possible — and in as many locations as possible. This is where fraud detection services can really shine.
Here’s where Identity Guard and IdentityForce stand when it comes to monitoring:
Alerts and notifications
Fraud alerts bridge the gap between monitoring services and your own involvement in the fraud prevention process.
When an automated scan flags something potentially suspicious, it’s up to you to follow up by contacting your financial institution, changing account passwords, and taking any other recommended actions that make it harder for fraudsters to target you.
Here are the alerts that Identity Guard and IdentityForce provide:
While monitoring and alerts are crucial to addressing security breaches as soon as they occur, proactive security measures aim to prevent criminals from getting to you in the first place.
These solutions target vulnerabilities in your everyday habits that fraudsters often exploit. Safeguarding your personal devices is one way you can block major threats attempted by online criminals.
Here’s how Identity Guard and IdentityForce’s proactive protections compare:
Support and resolution
Unsurprisingly, most victims find themselves immediately in over their heads when faced with an identity fraud attack. Fraud resolution is a long and painstaking process, and it’s difficult to navigate if you don’t know much about it.
This is why strong customer support is essential to any fraud protection service. Identity Guard and IdentityForce both offer U.S.-based customer care and fraud resolution.
However, Identity Guard’s White Glove Fraud Resolution Specialists are only available on the Ultra plan, which is Identity Guard’s highest-priced tier, whereas this service is provided to IdentityForce’s lower-tier members with an UltraSecure plan subscription.
In the case of losses due to a fraud attack, both Identity Guard and IdentityForce cover up to $1 million in eligible damages. However, IdentityForce specifies that their “coverage may vary” depending on the membership plan.
No further details are provided as to the minimum and maximum coverage levels for each pricing tier, but it seems clear that the maximum $1 million coverage is not available to all members.
Ease of use
Both providers offer a mobile app for iOS and Android devices to give members easy access to services on the go. And both allow users to link their accounts, view alerts and monitoring activity, and access all the features and resources that come with their protection plan.
A user-friendly interface is the essential function of both mobile apps. IdentityForce also offers a Mobile Attack Control feature that protects mobile devices from malware, spyware, and unsecured Wi-Fi connections.
Identity Guard is more affordable than IdentityForce, and covers more family members on its family plan than IdentityForce does.
You can purchase annual coverage of Identity Guard’s highest tier, its Ultra plan, for $17.99 per month. IdentityForce’s UltraSecure+Credit costs $29.95 per month for its premium individual plan.
Identity Guard’s family plan covers five adults and unlimited children, and costs 23.99 per month for its highest level of protection. IdentityForce’s family plan costs $35.90 per month at the highest tier, with coverage for an unlimited number of children, but only two adults.
The Bottom Line: Protect Your Identity With Identity Guard
Identity fraud is no longer a distant threat. Recent statistics estimate that an identity theft incident occurs every 22 seconds [*].
Don’t postpone improvements that you could be making now to your personal security setup. Identity Guard offers the best protection plans to shield yourself and your family members from fraud and online threats.
Identity Guard’s award-winning identity monitoring and fraud protection services include Safe Browsing tools, personal information and credit monitoring software, and $1 million in insurance coverage, along with a dedicated team of White Glove Fraud Resolution Specialists.