Best credit monitoring services are those that provide all credit reports and many features in their plans. Credit monitoring services that provide the most features are typically paid. However, many reliable companies offer credit reports and credit monitoring for free. There are many sites of the type: free credit report. The catch is that they require you to add your credit card, and then they start charging you for credit monitoring, which is not free. This looks like a scam. A free credit monitoring site means totally free! A site that won’t ask you even to give your credit card. The main reason people subscribe to credit monitoring is to prevent identity theft and monitor their credit reports.
Below are the best credit monitoring companies for 2022. Some of them are totally free and provide reliable service. We also give you the big names in paid credit monitoring because some provide much more features for more advanced people. No credit monitoring services can prevent identity theft in full! If someone tells you this, that is a scam! The most secure ways to prevent identity theft are: credit freeze, fraud alert, and be careful with who you share your personal information with! It would help if you also get credit monitoring. The fact that credit monitoring can’t prevent identity theft in full doesn’t mean that you don’t have to get it!
What plans does LifeLock offer?
LifeLock has 3 individual plans: LifeLock Standard, LifeLock Advantage, and LifeLock Ultimate Plus.
LifeLock Standard costs you $8.99/mo first year. After that, you have to prepare $11.99/mo. Per year: $124.99.
LifeLock Advantage costs you $17.99/mo first year; after that, $22.99/mo. Per year: $239.99.
LifeLock Ultimate Plus is $25.99/mo first year; after that, $34.99/mo. Per year: $339.99.
But now, LifeLock offers discounted prices.
IdentityGuard offers one of the most comprehensive identity theft protection plans and credit monitoring. IdentityGuard covers all the basics of identity monitoring – name, Social Security number, bank accounts, credit reports, etc. – but it’s missing a few features found among the best identity theft protection services. Its restoration services also leave something to be desired.
$6.67/mo, Save 26% – Regularly $8.99
$16.67/mo, Save 33% – Regularly $24.99
$13.33/mo, Save 33% – Regularly $19.99
Value Package Individual = $24.00
Value Package Family = $57.60
Total Package Individual = $48.00
Total Package Family = $96.00
Premier Package Individual = $57.60
Premier Package Family = $120.00
IdentityForce is one of the best identity theft protection services, and for a good reason. Their identity theft protection plan runs $12.99 a month for UltraSecure Plan. However, it is well worth it and upgrading to the $19.99 plan for their UltraSecure Credit Plan, which adds many credit monitoring perks. Our IdentityForce review is here if you want to give it a look. But here are the main additional benefits which made us put them in the top 5:
IdentityForce also includes lost wallet protection, medical card protection, insurance, daily credit monitoring, access to 3 bureau credit scores, fraud alerts, and an Identity Score that represents your level of risk. There’s no wonder why it’s Top 3 on nearly every list.
CreditSesame is very well known for giving a nearly instant credit report and score. But it’s better known for being a completely FREE service to use. Yes, CreditSesame is FREE credit monitoring! A few years ago, they also became a free identity theft protection service provider. The features are not as comprehensive as what you will get with a paid plan, but you can’t beat the price! Benefits:
MyFICO, as the name implies, was started by FICO. FICO is the company that invented the credit score that the three main bureaus (Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion) use today. MyFICO was founded as a way for people to get their credit score online easily and has since evolved into a full-fledged monitoring service. It’s number three on the list primarily because they do not offer as much protection as the top 2 guys, but their credit monitoring is definitely notable as one of the best out there. Benefits:
IdentityIQ monitors for any use of a customer’s SSN within its network and alerts them of what is seen. Other monitoring services will only alert customers if their SSN is used with a wrong address or name. Also, IdentityIQ performs enhanced change of address notification. The company monitors for a change of address request with the credit reporting agencies. It monitors the National Change of Address registry to ensure customers are informed of changes to their information. Identity Protection Affordable Monthly Plans Comprehensive Identity and Credit Reporting Services $1 Million Protection Online Educational Resources.
TransUnion is one of the three big bureaus that rate consumer credit and, ultimately, give you your score and report. All three bureaus offer solid protection, but TransUnion offers the best. Benefits:
Here is why it’s the best credit monitoring service out there:
Disclaimer: “Service Guarantee benefits for State of New York members are provided under a Master Insurance Policy issued by State National Insurance Company. Benefits for all other members are provided under a Master Insurance Policy underwritten by United Specialty Insurance Company. Under the “Service Guarantee,” LifeLock will spend up to $1 million to hire experts to help your recovery. Please see the policy for terms, conditions, and exclusions at https://lifelock.com/legal.”
Experian offers many of the same services that Equifax does… but the pricing is structured differently. Your first month is $5, not free. And each month is $20/month after that! For this reason, we’ve put Experian at number seven. Benefits:
$4.95 for your first month at Experian.
Mint is not like the rest that you see here. Instead, you are monitoring your accounts easily, in real-time, with alerts sent to you every week. Benefits:
CreditKarma is probably one of the more famous names in the free credit report business. They offer excellent tools to help with your finances and keep your credit in a good range. But they do not have as much protection as CreditSesame does, focusing more on monitoring than anything else. Benefits:
You might bank at WellsFargo, and certainly many people do. It’s one of the most trusted names in financial services and is no slouch when it comes to keeping your credit intact. We placed it at number four because, even though their offer is good, it’s simply doesn’t offer a lot of flexibility in choice. But if you’re satisfied with this, you can’t go wrong.
Equifax is the 2nd bureau on our list, and they offer a lot of similar options as TransUnion does. However, they do not offer updates as frequently as many of the other companies do. Not only that, but only TransUnion makes it easy to see your debt-to-income ratio, which is a big factor in credit approval. Benefits:
There might be something you’re wondering about how these services work. You are free to comment with a question below but first, look at some frequently asked questions below.
This is the act of monitoring your credit, which can be defined as your credit cards, bank accounts, investment accounts, and much more. Most credit monitoring companies will watch for signs of forced account changes and unauthorized transactions. You can also find credit + identity monitoring packages that work together to drastically reduce the chance of any credit fraud occurring in the first place.
Identity monitoring is the act of watching for signs of identity theft or fraud, while credit monitoring watches for credit fraud-related attacks. The two often combine; if someone’s identity is stolen, it’s usually used to commit identity fraud for financial gain. This typically requires fraudulent credit card or unauthorized credit card transactions.
As for protective services, there is a bit of a gray area between the two. A quality credit monitoring program will watch for identity theft signs because these things could serve as a precursor to credit card fraud. So you can get certain alerts and track in a credit monitoring plan that you will find in an identity protection plan and vice versa.
We always recommend to our readers that they invest in a combination of the two. You can pick up a combined plan for anywhere from $15 to $30. This guarantees all areas are protected, and therefore there will be fewer points of failure’ to incur.
If you are a small business owner, your business credit is just as dangerous as your personal credit. You might even be more liable for it; since your business information is hard to protect, having some credit monitoring would be great.
We haven’t reviewed any specific business monitoring plans, but we are aware of at least two that are worth looking into if you’re in this position. They’re CSID and Experian, both of which have specialty business/enterprise credit monitoring plans for you to use.
If you are a student, we recommend that you invest in basic credit monitoring. You could find similar results with a free service, so don’t be scared to take on a limited monitoring plan. Once you have active credit cards or don’t have a security freeze, you’ll be better off with a premium credit monitoring plan.
If you have no credit history, e.g., “thin file,” then CreditKarma is the perfect option for you. They offer free monitoring to anyone with a thin file; we covered this before if you’re interested in reading more.
The following companies all offer free monitoring plans from the list we’ve provided: CreditSesame and CreditKarma. There are some options to upgrade, but you’ll have access to at least some basic credit monitoring features here. We recommend CreditSesame the most, as when you decide to upgrade, you can seamlessly make the conversion. They also give you both credit monitoring and identity theft protection at no cost.
Credit monitoring services are pretty cheap, and they essentially pay for themselves once you look at all the cost-saving factors. Not to mention, your credit score going up will save you a lot on interest costs in future years as well. Since these plans are so affordable and many have free trials, you have no excuse. Get protected today! These are the best credit monitoring services we have covered lately. Don’t forget that many identity protection companies offer credit monitoring in their plans. Getting identity theft protection and credit monitoring services under the same provider is usually a lot cheaper.
Here is our list of the top identity theft protection companies.
Our research looked at criteria of price flexibility, breadth of offering, and customer satisfaction. Using these criteria, we’ve narrowed it down to the 10 best credit monitoring services to consider and ordered them by performance. Without further ado, let’s look at how each company stacks up!