7 Best Dark Web Monitoring Services Reviews (2024)

Lauren Sakiyama
Writer
Brandon King
Editor
Last Updated February 9, 2024

Home Security Heroes independently tests and reviews every product. We may earn a commission when you buy through our links. Read more here.

You want the best dark web monitoring possible with your identity protection service. Sacrificing in this area is like wearing a blindfold while crossing a street. Instead of looking for dangerous traffic, you’re just praying vehicles won’t hit you

If you don’t have accurate, timely, and actionable dark web alerts with your identity protection service, you’re asking for a criminal to cause real harm rather than taking simple proactive steps (sort of like looking both ways before crossing a street)

So, when choosing an identity protection service, it’s a good idea to place a significant value on their dark web monitoring capabilities. After testing many identity protection tools, I found that a surprising amount of them can’t accurately monitor the dark web – but the ones on this list can. 

And Aura, my top choice, does a whole lot more than that. With Aura, you’ll never have to worry about the dark web again.

Plus, if you get our exclusive OFF offer today, you lock in that price for life.

Before we get too far, though, let’s ensure we’re all on the same page by answering the most basic question…

What Is The Dark Web? 

The dark web(darknet) refers to the portion of the Internet that search engines don’t index. On it, private computer networks can anonymously conduct business. And because everything there is anonymous, it’s filled with crime. 

If there’s a data breach or your information is stolen, it will likely end up on the dark web. It’s not rare for criminals here to sell stolen information like:

  • Account logins
  • Driver license information
  • Medical ID information
  • Bank and credit card information
  • Certification numbers (allowing people to create fake diplomas and other certs)

Top Dark Web Monitoring Services Reviews of 2024

Overall Score

Monitoring & Alerts

  • Aura found 15 unique dark web alerts, the maximum in our test

  • Identity Guard found the same number of alerts since they use the same engine

  • Found 7 unique dark web alerts

Threat Resolution

  • White Glove support standard on all plans

  • Only the most expensive Ultra plan offers White Glove support

  • Excellent customer service

Theft Insurance Per Adult

  • $5M Theft Insurance total on the Family plan with 5 adults

  • $1M per adult on all plans

  • $1M total Theft Insurance on all plans

  • $1M total Theft Insurance on all plans

Customer Support

  • Aura wins with their US-based 24/7 support

  • Great US-based customer support but needs 24/7 hours of operation

  • IdentityForce matches Aura with their excellent US-based 24/7 support

Additional Services

  • VPN

  • Antivirus

  • Parental Controls

  • Password Manager

  • Password Manager

  • VPN

  • Antivirus

  • Parental Controls

  • VPN

  • Password Manager

  • Antivirus

  • Parental Controls

Cost

  • Aura offers an incredibly low price and highest bang for your buck

  • Identity Guard is great if you want the cheapest plan, but costs more than Aura for similar protection

  • More expensive than Aura with lesser protection

Renewal Price Increased After 1st Year?

  • No. You lock in the price for life

  • No. You lock in the price for life

  • No

Promo Code




You need accurate and timely dark web monitoring to protect your identity fully. And you need a service that provides actionable alerts to prevent future issues. 

After testing several services, I found the following seven picks to be the best at finding my information on the dark web.

1. Aura – Best Overall

Initial Scan Results: Two Dark Web Alerts

Aura Logo

Pros

  • Highly accurate and comprehensive monitoring 
  • 24/7/365 U.S.-based threat resolution team
  • Family plans allow for up to five adults
  • Insurance increases with each adult on the plan 
  • Includes a full suite of digital privacy and safety tools for adults and children
  • Affordable

Cons

  • The user interface could be better

Why I Picked It

Out of all the services I’ve tested, Aura is my number one choice for dark web monitoring because it’s:

  • Accurate 
  • Fast (the initial scan took under five minutes)
  • Actionable (alerts give you all the information you need to take proactive and protective steps)

But excellent dark web monitoring isn’t the only thing Aura brings to the table. It’s a fantastic identity protection service in almost every way. 

First, Aura monitors more than just the dark web. Their award-winning identity theft and credit monitoring also keeps track of public records, including your home and auto title, criminal records, and the sex offender registry. And Aura monitors financial accounts, including investment accounts like your 401(k). 

On top of that, Aura comes with three-bureau credit monitoring and a whole host of digital security tools like a VPN, password manager, antivirus software, and more. 

Aura also offers white-glove identity restoration and expert threat resolution through their 24/7/365 U.S.-based customer service team. So if you do become a theft victim, you know you’re in good hands. 

Plus, Aura comes with $1 million in theft insurance per adult on your plan. And, unlike other plans that restrict you to two adults, Aura allows you to include up to five adults (and unlimited children) on any family plan. 

Finally, Aura comes with many useful tools that help parents protect their kids online. This includes parental controls and a safe gaming function that monitors interactions between players on over 200 games. It alerts parents to signs of bullying, harassment, and grooming. 

Aura does all of this at an exceptionally affordable rate. When you use our discount code, you can save even more, and the price doesn’t increase upon renewal.

The only downside to Aura is in its interface – it could be better. But it’s also easy to use, so this is a very minor issue

Aura Plans & Pricing

Aura

Promo Code

Individual Plan Cost

  • $9/month 

Aura only offers one plan but offers the same benefits as Identity Guard's Ultra plan

Couple Plan Cost

  • $17/month 

  • Covers 2 Adults

Family Plan Cost

  • $25/month 

  • Covers 5 adults & unlimited kids

Aura only offers one plan but offers the same benefits as Identity Guard's Ultra plan

Renewal Price Increased After 1st Year?

  • No. You lock in the price for life

Promo Code


2. Identity Guard – Runner Up

Initial Scan Results: Two Dark Web Alerts

Identity Guard logo

Pros

  • Very affordable Value plan available
  • Fantastic interface

Cons

  • Value plan isn’t very comprehensive 
  • More comprehensive monitoring is expensive

Why I Picked It: 

Identity Guard is Aura’s predecessor. So, it’s no surprise that it’s just as accurate and fast when it comes to monitoring the dark web. 

If dark web monitoring is the only thing you’re interested in, you might opt for Identity Guard’s Value plan, which offers complete dark web monitoring at a very low rate. 

Unfortunately, the Value plan isn’t very comprehensive. It doesn’t include specialized services like home title or investment account monitoring or white-glove restoration services. 

Higher plan tiers offer all of Aura’s monitoring services, but they’re also much more expensive.

I do like Identity Guard’s interface, though. It’s very easy to navigate. So, it’s not a bad option if you want dark web monitoring alone.

Identity Guard Plans & Pricing

Promo Code

Individual Plan Cost

  • $5/month Value Plan

  • $11.99/month Total Plan

  • $17.99/month Ultra Plan

Couple Plan Cost

  • No Couples plan

Family Plan Cost

  • $8.99/month Value Plan

  • $17.99/month Total Plan

  • $23.99/month Ultra Plan

Covers 5 adults & unlimited kids

Renewal Price Increased After 1st Year?

  • No. You lock in the price for life

Promo Code


3. IdentityForce – Best Family Inclusions

Initial Scan Results: Two Dark Web Alerts

Identity Force logo

Pros

  • Comprehensive monitoring tools 
  • Deceased member fraud remediation
  • Restoration for immediate family, even without a family plan

Cons

  • Significant upcharge for basic credit monitoring

Why I Picked It: 

IdentityForce offers extremely accurate dark web monitoring, just like Aura and Identity Guard, and its additional monitoring services are fairly comprehensive. 

Though it doesn’t include home title monitoring, it does monitor other public records. And it comes with investment account monitoring. 

On top of that, IdentityForce offers white-glove restoration services with all plans and deceased member fraud remediation. So, your family doesn’t have to worry about identity theft after you pass away (and unfortunately, all-too-common occurrence).

IdentityForce also offers several digital privacy tools, including a VPN, identity vault, and password manager.   

Where IdentityForce really stands out, though, is in its family offerings. See, IdentityForce offers white-glove identity restoration for immediate family members without a family plan.

 You have to purchase a family plan to include family monitoring, but the fact that they offer identity restoration that’s essentially complimentary is a huge plus! 

My only real gripe with IdentityForce is in their price structure. They charge significantly more to include basic three-bureau credit monitoring. With this, IdentityForce includes a few tools, like a credit simulator, that are sort of nice to have.

But, the price jump doesn’t really seem warranted – not when there are many less expensive and a few completely free credit monitoring options.

IdentityForce Plans & Pricing

IdentityForce

Promo Code

Individual Plan Cost

  • $14.99/month  UltraSecure

  • $19.9/month  UltraSecure+Credit

Couple Plan Cost

  • No Couples plan

Family Plan Cost

  • $24.99/month  UltraSecure

  • $35.9/month  UltraSecure+Credit

Renewal Price Increased After 1st Year?

  • No

Promo Code


4. Zander – Best Budget Pick

Initial Scan Results: Two Dark Web Alerts

zander logo

Pros

  • Budget-friendly
  • Increasing insurance per adult on the plan
  • Include home title fraud reimbursement (but not home title monitoring)

Cons

  • Monitoring isn’t very comprehensive
  • Alerts are sometimes vague

Why I Picked It

Zander is a very inexpensive option for no-frills dark web monitoring services. 

For under $7 per month, you can get accurate dark web monitoring. It’s not nearly as comprehensive as other services (you’re not going to get much in the way of other monitoring services – as in, no investment account or criminal records monitoring), but the low price makes it stand out. 

Zander also comes with 24/7 customer service, a $1 million theft insurance policy, and home title fraud reimbursement (a feature few other services include). 

Notably, Zander also increases its insurance coverage when you add your spouse to your plan. So, family plans come with $2 million in coverage, which is a nice feature. 

Unfortunately, Zander’s low-price coverage has a few flaws. The biggest is with their alerts. Some of them simply aren’t actionable.

While one of the alerts I received gave me all the details I needed to do something about it, including the name of the compromised website, which email had been exposed, and whether or not the password was encrypted, the other alert looked like this: 

zander alert

Notice it doesn’t provide the website that was breached! It only gave me the compromised email and date, which isn’t all that helpful.

Zander Plans & Pricing

Zander

Individual Plan Cost

  • $6.75/month ESSENTIAL

  • $9.99/month ELITE CYBER

Couple Plan Cost

  • No Couples plan

Family Plan Cost

  • $12.95/month ESSENTIAL

  • $19.49/month ELITE CYBER

Renewal Price Increased After 1st Year?

  • No

5. IDX – Most Detailed Alerts

Initial Scan Results: Two Dark Web Alerts

IDX Logo

Pros

  • Actionable alerts
  • Great interface
  • Comes with identity restoration guaranteed

Cons

  • Pricey
  • Missing some monitoring services

Why I Picked It

IDX isn’t the most well-known identity protection service, probably because of its price. It’s one of the more expensive options, especially if you want to include both identity monitoring and IDX’s suite of privacy tools.

But, with IDX, you do seem to get what you pay for. The interface is fantastic, its monitoring is pretty comprehensive (it’s missing the home title and investment account monitoring but includes everything else), and it comes with an identity recovery guarantee. 

What I really love about IDX, though, is its alert details. This service gives an absurd amount of detail with each alert, allowing you to fully understand what was compromised and how at risk your identity is

Take a look at what I mean: 

IDX data center

It gives me the backstory behind the breach, tells me exactly what was exposed, and tells me what I should do about it. The service is also accurate, finding just as many dark web alerts as my top pick.

IDX Plans & Pricing

IDX

Individual Plan Cost

  • $9.95/month IDX Identity

  • $12.95/month IDX Privacy

  • $32.90/month IDX Complete

Couple Plan Cost

  • No Couples plan

Family Plan Cost

  • $19.95/month IDX Identity

  • $25.95/month IDX Privacy

  • $64.99/month IDX Complete

Renewal Price Increased After 1st Year?

  • No

6. Costco Complete ID – Best For Costco Executive Members

Initial Scan Results: Two Dark Web Alerts

complete id logo

Pros

  • An affordable option for Costco Executive members
  • Comes with digital privacy and security suite
  • Detailed sex offender alerts

Cons

  • Alerts are missing details
  • Missing some monitoring areas

Why I Picked It

If you’re a Costco Executive member, Costco CompleteID might be worth looking at. It’s a very accurate service at a very affordable price. But only if you’re a Costco Executive member

I wouldn’t join Costco just to have this service, nor would I recommend it to regular members. For them, the price of the service is still too high, given what it includes. 

See, Costco Complete ID’s monitoring isn’t very comprehensive. You get dark web monitoring (obviously), payday loan monitoring, and criminal record monitoring, but there’s no home title, investment account, or transaction monitoring. 

That said, it does come with some good features, like an in-portal Experian credit lock, a password manager, and a VPN.

Costco Complete ID’s neighborhood watch is also uniquely detailed, providing everything you could possibly want to know about registered sex offenders in your neighborhood, in some cases even including details of their conviction. 

If you have young children and are worried about potential predators moving nearby, it might be a useful feature. 
My real gripe with Costco Complete ID is the same as my issue with Zander – its alerts aren’t always actionable and are sometimes missing key details. So, while it’s accurate, you might not be able to do very much with the alerts it gives.

Costco Complete ID Plans & Pricing

Individual Plan Cost

  • $8.99/m for Executive Members

  • $13.99/m for Business + Gold Star Members

Couple Plan Cost

  • $15.99/m for Executive Members

  • $25.99/m for Business + Gold Star Members

Family Plan Cost

  • $11.98/m | One Adult + Children (up to 5 children) for Executive Members

  • $17.98/m | One Adult + Children (up to 5 children) for Business + Gold Star Members

---

  • $18.99/m | Two Adults + Children (up to 5 children) for Executive Members

  • $29.99/m | Two Adults + Children (up to 5 children) for Business + Gold Star Members

Renewal Price Increased After 1st Year?

  • No

7. LifeLock – Best User Interface 

Norton LifeLock logo

Pros

  • Fantastic user interface
  • Comprehensive monitoring
  • Great added features

Cons

  • Poor customer service
  • Price increase upon renewal
  • Below-average insurance coverage for anything but the top-tier plan

Initial Scan Results: One Dark Web Alert

Why I Picked It

LifeLock makes this list for two reasons: 

  1. It’s the most well-known identity protection service, and you’re probably already considering it
  2. The user interface is impressive

Unfortunately, it’s also the only service on this list to miss a dark web alert. So, while it’s effective at dark web monitoring, it’s not as good as the other services I’ve tested. 

If you want a seamless user interface and the comfort of using a big-name brand, LifeLock could be a decent pick. Its monitoring is certainly comprehensive, including everything from criminal records and payday loans to your investment accounts. 

And LifeLock comes with all sorts of additional features like Norton antivirus software and a good VPN. Family plans offer parental controls, and if you’re willing to pay for the top-level plan, you get fantastic insurance coverage ($3 million per adult and over $1 million per child). 

But there are major flaws to LifeLock’s services as well. 

First, its customer service team isn’t U.S.-based, and they’re difficult to reach, despite having 24/7 hours. Getting their support phone number takes clicking through multiple “contact us” pages from your dashboard. 

LifeLock also increases its price upon renewal, and if you opt for anything but the top-tier plan, your theft insurance coverage ends up well below average. The low-tier plan only offers $25,000 in stolen funds and expenses. 

So, I can’t recommend LifeLock. It’s not the worst service for dark web monitoring, but it’s also not the best option.

LifeLock Plans & Pricing

LifeLock

Promo Code

Individual Plan Cost

  • $7.5/month Standard Plan

  • $15/month Advantage Plan

  • $20/month Ultimate Plus Plan

Couple Plan Cost

  • $12.5/month Standard Plan

  • $24/month Advantage Plan

  • $33/month Ultimate Plus Plan

Family Plan Cost

  • $18.5/month Standard Plan

  • $30/month Advantage Plan

  • $39/month Ultimate Plus Plan

Renewal Price Increased After 1st Year?

  • Price increases after first year

Promo Code


Frequently Asked Questions

Is it really possible to monitor the dark web? 

Yes, it’s possible to monitor the dark web. Though the dark web is a big and rather scary place, monitoring services are able to successfully comb through it because they know what they’re looking for. 

When you give a dark web monitoring service your name, address, email, and other personal information, it begins scanning dark web sites for those items. 

Of course, some services are better at this than others. The services on this list are remarkably good. I’ve tested many other identity protection services, and many of them came back with no dark web hits at all, showing the huge disparity in accuracy within dark web monitoring.  

Is dark web monitoring a good idea? 

Yes, dark web monitoring is a good idea. If you know what personal information is available on the dark web, you can take steps to protect yourself before a criminal does any harm. 

You can change your passwords or freeze your credit, both of which take little time or effort when you have the right tools within your identity protection service (like in-portal credit locks and password managers). 

Is everyone’s info on the dark web? 

I can’t say that everyone’s information is on the dark web, but the vast majority of us have something out there. 

At some point, a service you use has probably had a data breach – whether that be Twitter or your bank. And when that happens, hundreds of thousands of emails, passwords, and other details leak onto the dark web. 

Why is the dark web allowed to exist? 

The dark web is allowed to exist because nothing about it is inherently illegal. Believe it or not, some reputable companies have a dark web presence. But, by its nature, everyone is anonymous, and that anonymity gives criminals a chance to thrive. 

Choosing The Best Dark Web Monitoring For You and Yours 

Monitoring the dark web for your information is a great step to take if you want to protect your identity (and your family’s). 

Unfortunately, while every identity protection service offers dark web monitoring, only some are actually good at it. 

The vast majority of services I’ve tested fail to find threats – the ones on this list are the ones that do

Aura is my top pick because it includes accurate and fast dark web monitoring alongside a treasure trove of other features. From expert threat resolution and identity restoration to a VPN and antivirus software, Aura is the best identity protection service available.

And it’s also affordable. With our discount code, you can lock in a low rate for life.