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LifeLock Review Identity Theft Protection

Updated on February 4, 2013

Why Choose LifeLock?

LifeLock is the identity theft protection company with the CEO who publishes his social security number on the side of a truck in New York City. That's really what catches most people's eye because who is crazy enough to publish their social security number?

Why do I need identity theft protection?

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has stated that identity theft is the fastest growing crime in the world. Identity thieves and hackers have found themselves a very profitable niche that's safe from arrest and prosecution. Only a very small number of thieves get caught and an even smaller number are convicted.

There's a huge market for identities out there and you only have to have an internet connection to get into the business. Imagine a thief getting his hands on a laptop with 5000 identites on it. At $100 per pop, he can clear half a million dollars.

So no matter how careful you are with your identity, your still at risk from security breaches.

What does LifeLock do to protect me?

LifeLock will:

  • Stop pre-approved credit offers and junk mail
  • Order your credit reports and have them mailed to you
  • Put a Fraud Alert on your credit and renew it for you
  • Lost or stolen wallet protection called WalletLock
  • Scan the internet's known criminal websites looking for illegal selling and trading of your personal information.
  • Monitor the Address Change databases to be sure identity thieves haven't hi-jacked your mail.

The Fraud Alert needs to be done correctly and renewed every 90 days.

If can do that some of that stuff myself for free, why do I need LifeLock?

There's no protection that's 100% fool-proof against identity theft. Identity thieves can take bits and pieces of different people's identity and create a new 'person'. This wouldn't necessarily show up on any credit reports because the data is too polluted and mixed up.

LifeLock offers a $1 million total service guarantee that if your identity is ever stolen while using their services, they will fix it for you AND reimburse all your expenses up to a million dollars. They promise to do whatever it takes to restore your credit and that includes hiring experts to help you. There's nothing quite like an expert when you really need some help. Having their guidance and expertise is priceless.

Is LifeLock better than Credit Monitoring?

Credit monitoring is a well-known and highly used service. It's offered by the credit bureaus - Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. They each have their own plans that range in price from $9.95 - $14.95 a month. You can also get credit monitoring from Wells Fargo and Discover Card for $12.95 a month.

Credit monitoring services watch your credit report and notify you if any changes have been made or new credit has been opened. Essentially, they're letting you know when someone has stolen your identity and opened a new line of credit. They have a help line you can call for advice but you're on your own to fix it. They offer up to $25,000 of identity theft insurance.

The idea behind LifeLock is to prevent identity theft, not to wait until it happens. LifeLock doesn't monitor your credit because they've found it offers no additional protection after they've set locks on your credit report. LifeLock is the new breed of protection.

Here's a thought to consider.

The credit bureaus don't talk much about fraud alerts, maybe because they're free. Plus, they make you renew them every 90 days. This is because they don't make any money from them. They do, however, make money from selling you credit monitoring.

Until just a few years ago, you had to pay them for your credit report. Then government mandated that everyone is entitled to a free credit report once a year available through 'http://annualcreditreport.com'. So what's the deal with that 'freecreditreport.com' site? That's a credit bureau trying to sell you credit monitoring.

What about other identity theft protection companies?

If you compare Identity Theft Protection plans, you'll find they have many similarities. The most recognized plans like TrustedID and Identity Guard place fraud alerts for you, too. They then go on to offer credit monitoring with email alerts as well. This is the major difference between them as LifeLock did studies and found that credit monitoring offered no additional protection, it just added to the monthly cost.

Identity Guard offers several different level of protection ranging in price from $11.99 a month to $14.99 a month for total protection. As a subsidiary of Intersections, Inc, they have been protecting over 7,000,000 businesses and individuals since the mid 1990's.

TrustedID is $12.99 a month and is endorsed by Suze Orman. It's a widely know and respected company. In addition to placing fraud alerts for you, they will also put a security freeze on your credit for an additional fee saving you from having to do it yourself at each credit bureau.

How much is LifeLock?

If you go to their website - LifeLock.com - the regular cost is $10 a month but there's a box for you to use for a promotional code.

To lower your cost to $9 a month, use the promotion code - 9. You'll also get your first month free as a trial period.

You can also call them at 1-800-LifeLock (1-800-543-3562) and mention you have the promo code - 9.

If you want a streamlined identity theft protection plan whose CEO puts his money where his mouth is, choose LifeLock.

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