Experian vs Identity Guard: Find The Protection For You

by Keith Morris

Topic:  ID Theft

> 1 min read

Experian IdentityWorks

Comprehensive identity protection services with several unique security features. Provides customers with daily Experian credit reports.

  • Offers a 30-day free trial before signing up for paid service
  • Unique CreditLock feature allows customers to lock and unlock credit file if a threat is detected
  • Can add up to 10 children to any plan

Monitors and surveys online and offline information using IBM Artificial Intelligence engine, Watson. High-risk alert system warns you of potential financial theft.

  • Social network reports detect online scams
  • Provides monthly 3-bureau credit reports to customers
  • Monitors all bank activities, including 401(k) and investment accounts

As people spend more time uploading large volumes of valuable data online, their information becomes extremely vulnerable to cybercrime. Over 3.2 million identity theft and fraud reports were recorded in 2019 alone.

Although nobody wants their identity or valuable information to be stolen, it’s virtually impossible to live a normal life today without storing confidential data online. Therefore, it’s now critical to invest in identity protection.

When researching providers, you’ll likely have to consider Experian vs. Identity Guard as two options. We’ve put together the following guide to break down and compare both services, making your choice as easy as possible.

Experian vs. Identity Guard: Comparison

WHAT YOU GET

EXPERIAN

IDENTITY GUARD

Coverage

  • Individuals and families
  • Individuals, businesses, and families

Key Security Features

  • Daily Experian credit reports and FICO scores
  • File-sharing surveillance system
  • 30-day free trial for all packages
  • Unique CreditLock feature
  • Highly rated mobile app
  • Family-friendly, allowing children to be added to your plan for free
  • Criminal record and address monitoring to notify you of potential felons in your area
  • Uses IBM Artificial
  • Intelligence engine, Watson
  • Unique high-risk alert system
  • Monthly 3-bureau credit reports and scores
  • Monitors all bank accounts, including 401(k) and investment accounts
  • Social network insight reports

Insurance and Fund Reimbursement

  • Up to $1,000,000 insurance reimbursement
  • Up to $1,000,000 insurance reimbursement

QUICK FACE-OFF

Similarities

  • Both providers offer comprehensive online and offline identity protection.
  • Regular internet activity plus dark web scanning can effectively detect fraudulent use of your identity .
  • Customers of each provider can access their accounts and information via mobile app or desktop log-in.
  • Both providers search databases and court records to find out if offenders or criminals are located nearby.
  • Financial activities, bank accounts, and credit details are monitored closely by each of these services.
  • Experian and Identity Guard offer up to $1,000,000 in insurance reimbursements if identity theft occurs.
  • Depending on what package you purchase, both providers produce 3-bureau credit reports for their customers.
  • Either company allows access to their recovery specialist teams if theft occurs.
  • Both providers are family-friendly and offer specific packages for people with children.
  • Each provider offers multiple plan options at different price points, allowing customers to choose one to suit their specific needs.
  • Real-time alerts are sent to customers as soon as suspicious activity or threats are detected.
    Both companies store and share customer data with third-party services.
  • Experian and Identity Guard provide social network reports to warn you of potential threats or scams on your social accounts.
  • Neither offer round-the-clock customer service or technical support.

Differences

  • Identity Guard offers several different packages at a range of prices, while Experian only offers 2 protection plans.
  • Experian offers a 30-day free trial on both of its plans. Identity Guard has no free trial option for any of its packages.
  • Experian produces daily credit reports and FICO scores as standard. Experian IdentityWorks Premium customers receive quarterly 3-bureau credit reports. Identity Guard provides monthly 3-bureau credit reports.
  • Identity Guard utilizes the IBM analytics engine, Watson, to offer many great features to its customers. This is a unique piece of technology that other identity protection services don’t have.
  • While both providers have alert systems in place, Identity Guard has a unique high-risk transaction alert to keep your money safe during certain transactions.
  • Experian has a unique file-sharing surveillance feature to protect customers against potential cyber threats through file-sharing platforms and websites.
  • Experian plans have a signature feature, called the CreditLock, which allows one-touch locking and unlocking of your credit file.
  • Identity Guard has two apps, with one designed specifically to counteract phishing scams on particular web browsers. The other is for customers to access their account and information.
  • The Experian app is highly rated on Android and Apple app stores, but both Identity Guard apps have very low ratings.

Experian Features and Services 

Identity Theft Protection and Security Features

Experian understands that comprehensive identity protection requires security features in a number of key areas. As well as providing extensive online monitoring (including dark web surveillance), Experian identity theft protection surveys key databases and court records to warn you of potential offenders in your area.

One of the most unique offerings is its file-sharing and social network surveillance. Many other providers neglect to treat social sites as potential problem areas.

Any red flags trigger real-time alerts, allowing you to combat a potential threat as quickly as possible.

Credit Monitoring

As one of the 3 major credit bureaus, Experian credit monitoring is excellent. Customers can avail of daily Experian Credit Reports and FICO scores. Premium members can avail of 3-bureau credit monitoring, reporting, and scoring every quarter.

The Experian CreditLock is a unique feature that allows customers to lock and unlock their Experian credit file with a single tap on their smart device.

Experian credit monitoring is up there with the most comprehensive services on the market.

Recovery

Experian can’t guarantee that theft won’t happen. If it does, customers gain access to a specialized identity theft resolution agent to recover stolen information quickly.

Experian has a maximum identity theft insurance reimbursement of up to $1,000,000.

Plans and Pricing

Experian plans come in two options: Experian IdentityWorks Plus and Experian IdentityWorks Premium. Customers can get a 30-day free trial before signing up for either package.

Experian IdentityWorks Plus

The standard Experian package provides customers with several important features, including Experian CreditLock, dark web surveillance, and 1-bureau credit monitoring.

This package costs $14.99 per month for one adult (and up to 10 children) and $19.99 per month for two adults (and up to 10 children).

Experian IdentityWorks Premium

The more comprehensive option includes several additional benefits, such as 3-bureau credit monitoring, reporting, and scoring, court record, file-sharing, social network monitoring, and more.

The Premium package costs $24.99 per month for one adult (and up to 10 children) and $29.99 per month for two adults (and up to 10 children).

Pros and Cons

PROS

  • Two options at different price points to cater to your specific needs.
  • Up to 10 children can be included in your plan for free.
  • Experian family plan allows two adults and up to 10 children on a single package.
  • Experian app is highly rated on both Android and Apple app stores.
  • 30-day free trial is available before purchasing any plan.
  • Unique CreditLock feature allows users to lock and unlock their credit file quickly and easily.
  • Up to $1,000,000 insurance reimbursement if theft occurs.
  • Daily Experian credit reports and scores.
  • US-based fraud resolution specialists are available to assist in theft recovery.

CONS

  • Many key features (such as 3-bureau credit monitoring) are only available with the Premium plan.
  • Customer service is reported to be lacking direct communication options
  • There is no 24/7 customer service.
  • Maximum insurance reimbursement is 50% lower with the cheaper plan ($500,000).
  • Customers are not fully covered if their assets are valued above $1,000,000.
  • The app works well, but it’s primarily focused on credit reports rather than identity protection.
  • Although there are 2 available plans, other providers offer more options.
  • 3-bureau credit reports are only available quarterly.
  • IdentityWorks Plus plan only monitors one credit bureau (Experian).

Identity Guard Features and Services

Identity Theft Protection and Security Features

Identity Guard identity theft protection services are some of the most comprehensive in the industry. Using artificial intelligence, created by IBM, Identity Guard offers several great security features, including dark web scanning, criminal and sex offense monitoring, USPS address change monitoring, and risk management reports, to name just a few.

Identity Guard’s highly regarded AI engine, Watson, accompanies a first-rate alert system to deliver excellent security cover. There are two Identity Guard apps, with one dedicated solely to combating phishing scams on your web browsers.

Credit Monitoring

A priority area for most identity protection customers is Identity Guard credit monitoring. Securing your financial information and bank accounts is one of the most important aspects of a security plan.

Identity Guard monitors all transactions, credit and debit cards, and bank accounts, including 401(k) and investment accounts.

A major benefit of their premium plan is that customers are sent monthly 3-bureau credit score updates. This allows for fraud and suspicious activity to be spotted quickly.

Recovery

If a threat is detected or you become a victim of identity theft, Identity Guard provides recovery assistance through a personal case manager. This representative guides you through every step of the recovery process.

Identity Guard offers up to $1,000,000 in insurance reimbursement if theft occurs.

Pricing and Plans

All Identity Guard plans are available to individuals and families. 

Value Plan

The basic identity protection plan provides key security features such as online and dark web scanning, high-risk transaction alerts, and IBM Watson surveillance.

The Identity Guard family plan is $12.50 per month, and the individual plan is $7.50 per month.

Total Plan

The standard identity and credit protection plan is an improved package that includes 3-bureau credit alerts, monthly credit scores, and more extensive financial cover.

This plan is $16.67 per month for individuals, and for families, it costs $25 per month. 

Ultra Plan

The premium offering from Identity Guard provides a long list of features. Some key aspects include social insight and 3-bureau credit reports.

The individual price is $25 per month, while the family price costs $33.33 per month.

Pros and Cons

PROS

  • Social insight reports look out for potential threats on social media.
  • The risk management report feature can show you how at-risk you are of identity theft.
  • 3-tier plan options for a variety of choices.
  • Low-to-high price options.
  • Identity Guard app is available on Android and Apple app stores.
  • Identity Guard is powered using the highly rated IBM analytics engine, Watson.
  • 3-bureau credit reports are available monthly.
  • There are 2 mobile apps for customers.
  • Family options make each plan more affordable for people with children.
  • Identity Guard dashboard is easy-to-use and contains a lot of key information.
  • Up to $1,000,000 maximum reimbursement for identity theft.

CONS

  • Identity Guard offers customer information to third parties and free services.
  • Customer support availability is limited and can’t be accessed 24/7.
  • The Identity Guard app has very low ratings on Android and Apple app stores.
  • The more basic of the Identity Guard plans lacks a lot of the best security features.
  • Customers are not covered for their assets that exceed $1,000,000 in value.
  • The advanced plans are quite expensive compared to competitors.
  • The anti-phishing app is only available on a limited number of web browsers.
  • There is no free trial option compared to Experian’s 30-day offer.

Conclusion

When choosing an identity theft protection provider, it’s important to find the right fit for your needs. Both Experian and Identity Guard offer comprehensive monitoring and surveillance of online activities and potential identity fraud. However, through its alert system and IBM AI engine, Identity Guard is in a class of its own in terms of overall coverage.

As one of the leading credit bureaus, Experian provides customers with daily Experian credit reports and FICO scores. Although this is a useful feature, the monthly 3-bureau credit reporting offered by Identity Guard is more effective in spotting potential identity theft or fraud.

For the majority of consumers, their financial assets are the main priority. Identity Guard provides daily surveillance of all financial activities and accounts, including 401(k) and investment accounts. With highly valuable retirement funds and potential life savings stored in such accounts, this is a huge plus for Identity Guard customers.

Although both companies offer packages for families, Identity Guard offers a wider variety of plans. Its 3-tier identity protection options give customers a broad choice, allowing them to choose a plan that fits their budget and needs.

Now that you’ve taken the first steps toward a more secure future for you and your family, it’s critical that you make the right choice of provider. Identity Guard is a clear frontrunner in this scenario. Sign up for an Identity Guard today and plan for a safer tomorrow.

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About the Author

Keith Morris is a 20+ year veteran of the security game, with the knowledge and experience to set you on the right track toward personal safety and security. His firm is committed to giving you the tools and know-how to combat any threat to your safety.