Many identity theft protection services offer similar things, but ID Shield is slightly different.
Companies such as Lifelock promise to survey black market Web sites and monitor your credit history. However, ID shield takes a slightly different approach.
Although they do offer similar types of services (monitoring your credit and bank accounts), ID shield has one thing that makes it different from the rest.
Read on to find out what it is in Elite Personal Finance’s ID Shield review!
What is ID Shield? Review of Their Service
ID Shield is a subsidiary of Legal Shield and used to be a part of their offerings. Now, ID Shield operates as a separate company.
Legal Shield was formed in 1969 in Ada, OK by a lawyer who wanted everyone to have access to legal help. Today, Legal Shield harnesses the power of the Internet with their app that any paying customer can download and use.
Legal Shield offers you will get legal assistance at any time, as much as you need. They claim to be able to save you lots of money on legal fees over the years.
Similar to other identity theft protection services, ID Shield offers credit monitoring and financial activity alerts. If someone tries to take out a loan in your name, you will be alerted to the activity.
You also have access to consultations with real lawyers who can help you in the legal aspects of getting your identity back.
The main differentiating factor is that, with their service, you have access to a private investigator who will track down identity thieves and, ultimately, bring them to justice. You are also given a $5 million coverage guarantee for any out of pocket costs that may be associated with this.
But, what’s the catch? Let’s look at how customers reviewed ID Shield.
ID Shield Complaints and Customer Reviews
There are a few customer reviews out there for ID Shield, and most of them say the same thing.
The big plus to ID Shield is how well they monitor your personal information and where it goes. They make it easy to not only protect your identity, but finding the person who did it and making a case for fraud becomes easy as pie.
The biggest complaints about their service is how, compared to Lifelock and Identity Guard, it doesn’t monitor financial information in a very robust manner. You only get credit reports from TransUnion when you would prefer to get three bureau credit monitoring.
ID Shield used to be an add-on to Legal Shield that cost $29.95 per month, but now it’s much cheaper, with individual protection costing $9.95 a month and family protection at $19.95 per month!
So ID Shield seems to be worth it overall, but if you mainly need credit reports and credit monitoring, you might want to go with another company.
Let’s review their plans and their offerings!
Individual Identity Theft Protection
Their first plan is for individuals, typically single bachelors, who need identity theft protection for themselves and only themselves.
It’s priced at $9.95/month, putting it at the same price as Lifelock and Identity Guard’s essentials.
The main features of this plan are as follows:
- Identity Protection Consultation Services: With this plan, you will get the opportunity to talk one-on-one with an identity protection expert who will go over with you about best practices concerning protecting your good name. They will help you in many ways, including reducing pre-approved credit card offers and consultation on many common scams and tricks that thieves use.
- Lost Wallet Assistance: In case you lose your wallet, you can simply call up ID Shield and they will help you cancel your credit cards and detect any security breaches that may have occurred due to this.
- Privacy Monitoring: They will monitor your identity online, scouring black market Web sites and chat rooms for any possible theft that you may be a victim of. They will also look across the Web for any exact matches of personal information.
- Records and Sex Offender Registry Monitoring: One way people will try to use your identity is to protect their own good name in case they get into legal trouble. In the event of someone using your name as an alias for criminal activity, ID Shield will help you find out what’s happening and restore your name.
- Credit Monitoring: They will scour your credit report and alert you to any activity that doesn’t seem right. You also get quarterly credit score reports(from TransUnion only) and tracking.
- Identity Restoration – Your Own PI: ID Shield will allow you access to their highly trained, Kroll certified private investigators to find out the source of any identity theft… and put the criminal to justice.
They have some solid offerings for the price! So, what are the benefits for your family?
Family Protection: For Up To 4 People
Their Family plan will allow you to get all the benefits of the Individual plan, plus some additional benefits, for your family. This includes you, your spouse, and up to 2 children… all for $19.95/month. That comes out to $5/month per person… less than half what Lifelock costs!
Again, you get the above benefits, plus the following additional benefits:
- Spousal Protection: All of the benefits you get are automatically transferred to your spouse as well. This makes getting this a great deal!
- Identity Protection for Minors: Minors are not supposed to have any activity on their credit report until they decide to build credit for themselves. If someone is using your child’s name in a criminal way, ID Shield will help you find out what’s happening.
ID Shield vs. Lifelock: How Do They Compare?
Lifelock is one of the top choices for fraud protection in the United States and is often seen as having the most benefits. But how does it compare to ID Shield?
Let’s see what they both offer in common:
- Black Market Surveillance
- Court Record and Sex Offender Registry Monitoring
- Credit Score Tracking and Monitoring
- Privacy Monitoring
- Fraudulent Activity Alerts
- Pre-Approved Credit Card Offer Reduction
So, what does ID Shield do better than Lifelock?
- Identity Recovery Services: they’re more comprehensive and include your own private investigator.
- $5 Million Service Guarantee: Lifelock only offers $1 million for out-of-pocket costs.
- Family Protection Deal: You get a much better deal on family protection by going with ID Shield.
What does Lifelock do better than ID Shield?
- 3 Bureau Credit Monitoring and Tracking: ID Shield only uses TransUnion.
- Financial Activity Alerts: Lifelock will track all of your bank accounts in your name and make sure nothing happens.
Most of Lifelock’s additional advantages do not come with the $9/month plan, but instead cost $19 or $29/month!
ID Shield is a better value for your money if you are protecting your family, or if you are concerned with a current case of ongoing identity fraud.
However, ID Shield does not have the additional credit monitoring benefits that Lifelock does, and the credit report is often the first place you look.
If My Identity Is Stolen… What Do I Do?
- Don’t Panic.
- File an initial fraud claim with a credit bureau (just one, any one will do).
- Get your credit reports ready and dispute any fraudulent activity.
- File a police report and an identity theft affidavit.
For more information, please read this report by the FTC. Follow these steps and you should be on the road to recovery.
Identity fraud happens to thousands of people every day, and it could happen to you. Know your rights, and know your options.
If you liked this post, please bookmark Elite Personal Finance and add us to your RSS feed. Like and share on Facebook and Twitter, and if you have anything to say, please comment below!