The Best Ranked Credit Monitoring Services 2014

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Credit fraud & identity theft is extremely serious and unfortunately the amount of reported cases is increasing annually. It’s important to take steps to secure your personal information and to keep tabs of your credit history to ensure there have not been unauthorized accounts opened in your name, or fraudulent use of your credit. One of the best security measures you can take is to sign up for the best credit monitoring service you can afford that has the features you need. Knowing that you will be alerted if there are any major changes or discrepancies on your credit report gives you a huge advantage in being able to stop the identity thieves before they do even more damage to your credit. There are dozens of available monitoring companies and services, but we put together a list of what we feel are the best credit monitoring services on the market today. Each one has slight differences in the coverage and features they provide and the monthly fee varies based on the plan level you choose. We suggest you compare 2 or 3 plans that have the features you want and choose the one with the price that best fits your budget.


1. IdentityGuard.com 

peaceofmind-banner_300x250
3 Bureau Credit MonitoringIdentity Theft Loss Insurance
3 Bureau Credit ReportPersonal Recovery Assistance
Credit ScoresAll 3 ScoresID Verification Alerts
Credit Score Updates3 Scores‚ QuarterlyLost Wallet Protection
3-Bureau Credit AnalyzerPublic Record Report
SSN Number MonitoringKeystroke Encryption Software
Computer Protection SoftwareFree No Risk 30 Day Trial

 

We’ve reviewed nearly two dozen monitoring services and IdentityGuard is the best in class identity & credit monitoring service hands down..  If you want a superior monitoring service, but need a cheaper solution than the LifeLock plans, IdentityGuard is your top choice. You get access to all 3 of your credit scores plus credit reports with complete analysis of possible identity & credit threats. Credit card, bank account,  & social security number monitoring give you complete coverage over your most important accounts.  Receive fast email alerting if credit report changes are detected and Identity Guard’s “Theft Loss Insurance”, which gives $1 million in identity theft coverage (no deductible), as well as 24/7 award winning customer support. This is a quality monitoring service at an affordable price.If you are serious about protecting your identity from malicious threats, we  recommend you sign up for the Identity Guard Free trial and try it for yourself.   orangearrow[1]The Identity Guard plan is free for 30 days & $16.99 monthly for a full plan subscription. — Click Here to Get Started


2. LifeLock.com 

lifelockultimatenew

3 Bureau Credit MonitoringIdentity Theft Loss Insurance
3 Bureau Credit ReportPersonal Recovery Assistance
Credit ScoresTransUnion OnlyID Verification Alerts
Credit Score Updates1 Score ‚ MonthlyLost Wallet Protection
Change of Address AlertsPublic Record Report
SSN Number MonitoringKeystroke Encryption Software 
Computer Protection Software ID Vault Password Protection Software

 

LifeLock is our next top pick, because of its combination of superior monitoring, price & features  Their comprehensive service features a five point plan that monitors your credit score, credit report and your identity for threats and unauthorized account activity.  When threats are discovered, LifeLock sends you and immediate alert via text, email or phone, so you can investigate and take prompt action.  With the addition of LifeLock Junior, you can also monitor your children’s credit reports for fraud.  We know that this service is slightly more expensive than some of the other monitoring plans available, but we give LifeLock high marks for service, value and customer service.  You won’t go wrong with this plan for full identity theft monitoring coverage hands down.    orangearrow[1]Sign up for LifeLock Ultimate Plus today and get your first 30 days FREE and save 10% through November 30th — Click Here


3. IdentityForce.com 

identityforce

3 Bureau Credit MonitoringIdentity Theft Loss Insurance
3 Bureau Credit ReportPersonal Recovery Assistance
Credit ScoresAll 3 BureausID Verification Alerts
Credit Score Updates3 Scores QuarterlyJunk Mail Termination
Sex Offender Monitoring AlertsPublic Record Report
SSN Number MonitoringKeystroke Encryption Software 
Computer Protection Software ID Vault Password Protection Software

 

IdentityForce uses a multi-level plan to help keep your identity safe.  Monitoring, Alerts & Control.  IdentityForce has full spectrum monitoring technology which watches your accounts for any suspicious activity, newly opened accounts or other threats.  This proactive approach allows them to discover any instances of identity theft and send you an immediate alert notification via their early warning system.  In the world of credit monitoring, we’ve found that the faster the alert times, the quicker you are able to investigate and stop the problem before it gets worse.  IdentityForce also assists you in taking control of your own credit, by helping you know where and when your personal information is being used at all times.  With their plan you have free access to keystroke encryption software for your computer, which can prevent pin number theft, credit card number theft and bank account theft.  You also receive 1 million dollars in identity theft insurance plus personal credit restoration assistance, if you happen to have your identity stolen.  This is a respected company with an excellent program and track record you can trust. orangearrow[1]  IdentityForce plans start at $14.99/month and you can try their service free for 14 days.  Click here to sign up. 


4.ID Cuffs 4 stars

idcuffs

3 Bureau Credit MonitoringIdentity Theft Loss Insurance
3 Bureau Credit ReportPersonal Recovery Assistance
Credit ScoresAll 3 ScoresID Verification Alerts
Credit Score Updates3 Scores ‚ AnnuallyLost Wallet Protection
Child Identity Protection Bank Account Security Alerts
SSN Number MonitoringAntivirus & Spyware Protection
Computer Protection SoftwareID Vault Password Protection Software 

 

ID Cuffs is a new company that provides a unique monitoring service, which emphasizes identity theft prevention over just standard monitoring.  ID Cuffs uses four key prevention tactics including credit bureau fraud alerts, bank account security alerts, eliminating “Pre-Approved” credit & insurance offers and stopping telemarketing phone calls. Also included is child & student identity protection and data breach protection for an additional layer of security.  They monitor various points of data in private & public databases which aren’t included on your credit history report. ID Cuffs provides an excellent set of tools to help minimize the likelihood of credit fraud & identity theft by targeting the source of these crimes.  This inclusive service is a great value and you can choose from two monthly plans. orangearrow[1]Click here to  sign up for a $1.99 /  7 day trial.  The monthly membership plan is only $19.99/month or $29.99/month for families.  Click Here to Enroll.



5. IdentityLookout 3 stars

idlookout

3 Bureau Credit MonitoringIdentity Theft Loss Insurance
3 Bureau Credit ReportPersonal Recovery Assistance
Credit ScoresExperian OnlyID Verification Alerts
Credit Score Updates1 Score ‚ QuarterlyLost Wallet Protection 
Credit Analyzer Credit, Debit & ATM Card Protection
SSN Number MonitoringKeystroke Encryption Software 
Computer Protection Software ID Vault Password Protection Software 

 

Identity Lookout is on par with the CreditReport123 service.  They offer a $1,000,000 dollar ID theft guarantee plus you can add multiple family members to your monitoring plan for additional safety.  You get daily three bureau credit monitoring, access to your Experian credit report with their fraud protection plan.orangearrow[1]You can test Identity Lookout  $1.00 for the 7 day trial, and only $9.95 a month once the trial is over.  A top rated value plan.


6. Protect My ID by Experian 3half

protect my id monitoring

3 Bureau Credit MonitoringIdentity Theft Loss Insurance
3 Bureau Credit ReportPersonal Recovery Assistance
Credit ScoresExperian OnlyID Verification Alerts
Credit Score Updates1 Score ‚ UnlimitedLost Wallet Protection 
Surveillance Alerts Credit, Debit & ATM Card Protection
Internet ScanningNational Change of Address Alerts
Computer Protection Software ID Vault Password Protection Software

 

Backed by Experian, Protect My ID credit monitoring gives you total control of your Experian credit reports as well as up to one million dollars in ID fraud insurance should your ID be stolen while on their plan. Also included are internet scanning, surveillance alerts and national change of address alerts, so if any of your personal data is changed, you’re the first to know about it.  You get peace of mind knowing you have a monitoring plan with a national credit bureau, plus with Automatic Fraud Alerts, you receive notification of any major changes to your three credit reports free of charge.   We recommend Protect My ID because it’s solid service from a trusted name.orangearrow[1]Sign Up for a Free 7 Trial & Get You Credit Score for Free Instantly. Protect My ID Monitoring Plan is $19.95 /  month if you continue your membership.  Click here to get started.


7. MyScore.com4 stars

myscore banner

3 Bureau Credit Monitoring Identity Theft Loss Insurance 
3 Bureau Credit ReportPersonal Recovery Assistance 
Credit ScoresAll 3 BureausID Verification Alerts
Credit Score Updates3 Scores ‚ Unlimited AccessLost Wallet Protection 
Online Debt Analysis Credit, Debit & ATM Card Protection 
SSN Number Monitoring Automatic Fraud Alerts
Computer Protection Software ID Vault Password Protection Software

 

MyScore.com is not just a credit score & report service.  Their credit reporting and monthly monitoring plans give you invaluable tools to keep track of your financial profile. Credit report information is provided by TransUnion, however your credit monitoring will include all three credit bureaus for additional fraud protection with email alerts when changes are detected.  You also receive unlimited access to your credit history and credit score.orangearrow[1]The free trial is 7 days and there are 3 monthly plans you can choose from if you’d like to gain full membership.


8. CreditReport1234 star rating

creditreport123

3 Bureau Credit MonitoringIdentity Theft Loss Insurance
3 Bureau Credit ReportPersonal Recovery Assistance 
Credit ScoresAll 3 ScoresID Verification Alerts
Credit Score Updates3 Scores ‚ QuarterlyLost Wallet Protection
Credit AnalyzerPublic Record Report 
SSN Number MonitoringKeystroke Encryption Software 
Computer Protection Software ID Vault Password Protection Software

 

With CreditReport123 it only takes three easy steps to receive quick access to your Experian, Equifax & TransUnion credit reports and credit scores.  Their service comes with total credit monitoring plus alerts to notify you of major changes to your credit reports including, newly opened lines of credit and submitted credit applications.  Use their Credit Analysis tool to simulate the effects of your financial choices on your credit score.orangearrow[1]Click here to Try CreditReport123 for $1.00 for 30 days and $18.99/month for a full membership.


What do Credit Monitoring Services Do?

The term “data breach” has unfortunately become part of the vernacular of hundreds of millions of Americans in the last year. Target, Home Depot, and even banking giant JP Morgan Chase have had sensitive customer information stolen by hackers. Add to that the Edward Snowden revelation that its own government is spying on them, and it’s not an understatement to say that individual concerns about identity theft are at an all-time high in the U.S. Interest in credit monitoring services has risen accordingly.

While the features offered by credit monitoring services will vary, they essentially track your credit report at one or more of the three big credit bureaus – Experian, Equifax and TransUnion. Depending on your preference, they will promptly notify you via a text message, an e-mail or an old-fashioned letter when they uncover unusual activity as it pertains to your account. They may also provide easy access to your credit report, assist you if fraud has been detected, and even reimburse you for some out-of-pocket expenses you’ve incurred directly related to fighting the fraudster.

What Benefits Do They Provide?

Credit monitoring services can be used to catch errors, improve your score or keep an eye out for fraud. For instance, if someone were to use your stolen personal information to apply for a new credit card in your name, the monitoring service would pick this up and send you an alert. However, if someone were to try to use your information to get a job or a cell phone, something that wouldn’t necessarily trigger a credit check with the reporting agencies, a basic credit monitoring service won’t be able to know. For this reason, more providers are now offering more comprehensive monitoring. The top-of-the-line plans can use Social Security number monitoring to check public records, databases and websites for use of your personal information.

The single biggest reason to use a credit monitoring service, however, often goes unnoticed. While most people understand the importance of their credit score, few really understand what goes into compiling it. Regularly reviewing your credit history leads to better credit knowledge, being cognizant of how your behavior, be it applying for that department store card, getting a car loan, or knocking down a big chunk of credit card debt, impacts your credit rating. If as they say, knowledge is power, then knowledge of how your actions impact your credit score can put you in charge of your financial well-being.

Suggestions for Choosing the Right Credit Monitoring Service

Knowing who is doing the monitoring is important. In addition to companies like Identity Guard and LifeLock that do so directly, banks and credit unions, and the credit bureaus themselves, all offer monitoring services. It’s possible that the entity that is selling the service is actually farming out the actual work to another entity. It’s good to know exactly who’s doing the work before signing up for any monitoring service. Similarly, it’s important to look at the longevity of the company, and be wary of any company that offers very little background information.  There are many different plans that should accommodate most budgets, so determine the features that are most important to you, and then select a monitoring service that fits into what you can afford monthly.

Not unlike any other service offering, be wary of companies that make over-the-top promises. If those promises sound too good to be true, they probably are. In particular, it’s important to be wary of claims that a company can prevent identity theft. No credit monitoring service can do that. What they can do is be on the lookout for suspicious activity, and notify you promptly if they spot any.

The Bottom Line

It never hurts to check with the Better Business Bureau or your state’s Attorney General office to verify the legitimacy of a credit monitoring service before signing up for one. While fear-mongering is the antidote for nothing, hard times, whether they are of your own creation or the result of outside influences, need to be dealt with. The 2008 financial crisis has resulted in an environment where credit precautions have become a necessity for many.

4half Total Ratings 4.3 out of 5 based on 1338 ratings.