Identity Force vs IDNotify

This is a tough comparison, as both of these services are exceptional in their own right, and for many of the same reasons. Let’s see if we can go over the exact strengths and weaknesses of each, and see which one might work better for any given user…or if maybe they’re perfectly evenly matched.

Why Should You Trust Us?

When we set out to review a service, we look at it through a very simple lens: “what is the experience a normal user would get?”

As a result, we’ve set up our entire process around that paradigm, with our experts mimicking a standard user at every step of the review process. We start by searching for the best deals, then sign up for a consumer account with our test information, which is modeled to be like a normal user as well, with some minor alerts that may be detected by the service.

Then, we wait, manipulating the information on a regular basis to simulate “a month in the life” of our test data.

Once the month is complete, we look at every aspect of the service, and grade it in each of our six primary categories:

  1. Monitoring and alerts
  2. Threat resolution
  3. Insurance
  4. Ease of use 
  5. Cost
  6. Additional services

These are listed in order of importance, and their scores are weighted accordingly. Monitoring is especially the single most important factor for any service, followed closely by what threat resolution options they offer and the quality of them.

These are the core of any identity theft protection service, and a low score in either category ensures failure for the entire service. While the rest of the features and options each service provides are nice, and can round out the experience and give it an edge over other services…if that basic performance isn’t there, it’s all useless.

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Do You Really Need Identity Theft Protection?

Cyber security concept, Businessman hand using smartphone with lock icon, protection network and internet, copy space.

Going without identity theft protection is a gamble, and one with variable stakes.

Identity theft and fraud are quite possibly the fastest growing crime in the history of the world, with near-exponential growth in the past few years due to world events forcing people indoors. Internet use surged, for both business and pleasure, even among people who traditionally would not have been inclined to spend as much time online.

This target-rich environment invites fraudsters to do all sorts of things with your information if they can get their hands on it.

At the most basic level, they may simply avail themselves of things you pay for without your knowledge. Have you ever noticed unfamiliar titles pop up on your Netflix account? That could be an example of identity fraud, where someone found your login information for Netflix and is simply using it without your knowledge.

This level of identity fraud is minimally disruptive. It technically doesn’t cost you anything, but can certainly be irritating when you notice it.

However, more sinister is someone using that information to access other accounts. Think of what might happen if someone gets a hold of your account information for Amazon, and can log in to your account. They now have a plethora of information. Your name, your home address, and perhaps most importantly, your credit card information.

Say they use this to make unauthorized purchases in your name. Small ones at first, but more noticeable later. This can cost you a lot of money, and perhaps more importantly: ruin your credit.

This is far from the worst of it, but it illustrates the point well enough.

Going without identity theft protection is like gambling twice. Your chances of “winning” are zero; there is no particular gain, unless you simply cannot afford even the least expensive service. Your chance of losing in a small way is large, and for every small loss you take…the chances of a big loss grow on the horizon.

It is simply safer and more responsible to have some kind of identity theft protection, even the most basic, so long as it is from a competent source.

Quick Score Guide:

CriteriaIdentity Force (8.5/10)IDNotify (8.5/10)
Ease of Use6/107/10
Monitoring and Alerts9/109/10
Threat Resolution7.5/108/10
Additional Services7/106/10
Cost10/109/10
Insurance9/107/10

Ease of Use: Winner – IDNotify

This one is pretty close when it comes to website layout, as that’s not my biggest gripe with Identity Force. Both have sites I would consider to be serviceable, though nothing groundbreaking.

IDNotify uses its space pretty well, doing one of the things I look for most: putting the alerts front and center so you can always see them.

IDNotify dashboard

Everything else is laid out well and works perfectly. As I mentioned, the main issue here is that nothing particularly stands out. This page is just…average. It takes a short amount of time to learn how to navigate, and doesn’t make it especially easy or hard to get to anything.

Identity Force is similar, though I think it does have a bit more of an issue in having a few parts of its dashboard being kind of useless.

IDforce dashboard

Things feel a little cramped with the articles on the right of the page, but nothing too egregious. In most ways, at a baseline, I actually like Identity Force’s dashboard layout and user experience better.

This is, unfortunately, only reflected in the account page itself. My larger issue with Identity Force’s ease of use comes in how difficult it makes it to sign up for the service and find information about it. It asks a lot of questions before signing up, but fails to give the answers you need to make important decisions, like whether to go with their family plan or not. This information is only available by calling in to customer support and asking…and you have to do that frequently if you want to gauge prices.

Even worse, canceling identity Force is a nightmare. Their retention department is aggressive and tenacious, willing to call you at all hours of the day, every day and bombard you with emails to boot. You have to very firmly, repeatedly tell them to knock it off before they get the message.

Monitoring and Alerts: Winner – Tie

I have no complaints here. Both of these services offer excellent monitoring, especially for their relative price points compared to other services on the market.

While the two services use different wording for some of these features, they boil down to the same monitoring types:

  • Data breach and dark web monitoring
  • Social security number monitoring
  • Social media monitoring
  • Credit monitoring
  • Bank account monitoring
  • Payday loan monitoring

Likewise, they possess the same level of quality. Both services throw up alerts very quickly after detecting the threats, often within minutes of the threat occurring. Both are also quite detailed in the information on offer, to better help you resolve the issue.

The only drawback, again shared by both, is the lack of more advanced or niche monitoring tools. The lack of home title monitoring in particular hurts homeowners, as that is hands down the single most important type of monitoring if you own a home.

Still, there are plenty of people who do not need that function or some of the others that larger services offer, and it doesn’t impact the quality of either service much in my eyes.

Threat Resolution Services: Winner – IDNotify

When it comes to threat resolution, customer support is the centerpiece of every service. In terms of competence, most services are about equal. There are a few standouts, but they typically tend to recruit knowledgeable and friendly individuals for their service. Identity Force and IDNotify are not exceptions in this regard.

The difference here comes down to availability.

IDNotify offers 24/7 access to their customer support, 7 days a week. Identity Force does not, instead hewing to a more traditional business day. They are open from 8 AM to 5:30 PM (EST), 7 days a week.

This is far from the worst out there in terms of hours, but it can’t compete with 24/7 support. Identity Force’s hours can make it a bit annoying to get a hold of them without needing to take time off work, which can be frustrating.

Additional Services: Winner – Identity Force

Both services here offer a single additional tool alongside their core set of identity theft protection options.

Identity Force offers a VPN service that is actually pretty solid, compared to a lot of free VPNs out there. You’re still probably better off paying for a dedicated VPN, but it’s nice to have the option to go without if you weren’t planning to buy one.

IDNotify’s option is definitely more interesting, but less generally useful: risk analytics. They offer a breakdown of what kinds of identity alerts are most prevalent in your area, which can help plan what kind of fraud you need to be on the lookout for the most.

Risk Analytics

Insurance: Winner – Identity Force

Identity Force is a clear winner here, as they meet the high industry standard for insurance. Identity Force offers $1 million in insurance, split into two pools: one for reimbursing lost or stolen money, and one for covering expenses like lawyer’s fees, lost wages for taking time off, and even childcare or elderly care that you wouldn’t normally need to pay for.

This gives you potentially up to $2 million in coverage if your losses and expenses total up to that much.

IDNotify, by contrast, only offers $1 million in insurance for both types of monetary loss combined. This isn’t bad, far from it, but it is very easy to judge it as merely half as good.

Cost: Winner – Tie

Both services here have roughly similar prices, but different pricing structures.

IDNotify has a standard three tiered structure, with scaling additional functionality and price.

Essential
Select
Premier
Price
Individual Cost
Essential
$9.99 /month
Select
$17.99 /month
Premier
$25.99 /month

In addition to these costs, IDNotify does two things very unusually. The first is that they offer no annual plan whatsoever: you can only pay month to month. The second is that they offer family protection, but no distinct family plan. Instead, these are flat rate additions to the base cost of every service. You can choose to pay $5 to cover up to 10 children, or $10 for two adults and up to 10 children.

As you can probably imagine, this deal is very bad for their “Essential” plan, but quite good overall for their Premier plan, as you get two full accounts and up to 10 lower value accounts for less than half of the primary account.

Identity Force’s pricing structure is simultaneously simpler and more obtuse.

Individual Plan
Family Plan
Price
Individual Monthly
UltraSecure
$17.99 /month
$215.88 /year
UltraSecure+Credit
$23.99 /month
$287.88 /year

Don’t be fooled: there is really only one level of service here. The UltraSecure plan provided everything of value. The extra charge for the other plan is just for credit monitoring…which you can get for free from other services like Credit Karma.

This is fairly straightforward, and a better price point than IDNotify by quite a bit. That is, for individuals anyway.

For families, Identity Force is a little more annoying. As mentioned previously, you have to call in to price their current family plan rates, which change frequently. They will only give you the current price with whatever discount may be active, and never the default price.

This could cost you any amount of extra money, and it’s impossible to tell beforehand. A black mark on an otherwise stellar price in my opinion, as uncertainty is never something you want in a product.

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Conclusion: Winner – Tie

It really is impossible to judge this race, and the only concrete tiebreaker I can point to is that IDNotify is a bit better for families much of the time, as you at least know what you’re paying for, while Identity Force is a bit cheaper for individuals.

Still, both are budget priced and offer stellar performance in every major category.

You can’t go wrong with either of these options.

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