Identity Guard vs. AllState Identity Protection

By Ken Gibson

Topic:  ID Theft

February 15, 2022

This is, in my view, a comparison between one of the best identity theft protection services around, and one of the worst, or at least my least favorite. Still, even bad services often offer something interesting that may recommend it over even the best, if you highly value their one or two unique features. Let’s see if that holds true for Allstate Identity Protection (formerly known as Infoarmor).

Why Should You Trust Us?

Identity Protection

Every product we look at is reviewed by experts with years of experience in the cybersecurity game. This is combined with our thorough method of review, which places an emphasis on finding practical use cases.

Each service is used the same way a normal user would. We look for the best deals we can before signing up, and pass them on to you where we’re able. Then we take a look at all of the service’s features and give it some time to percolate, and see how it handles a lot of the most common security threats out there.

Our test information is designed to turn up a lot of existing threats, both minor and major, and is used in such a way as to potentially create more over time. This is primarily what goes into our review of their monitoring systems. 

Once we’ve had the time to figure out how the service works and how well it handles potential threats, we grade it in each of our categories, and aggregate a final score for that service. These categories, in order of importance, are:

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

Keep in mind that these scores are heavily weighted based on what we think are the most important features. The first two options in particular are the most heavily weighted. Abject failure in either monitoring or threat resolution essentially assures a service will get a very low score, even if they’re very competitively priced, offer a ton of features, and provide an excellent user experience.

None of that is as important as actually being an effective identity theft service.

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Is Identity Theft Protection Really Necessary?

identity theft protection

Having effective identity theft protection is extremely important. Identity theft is more common than most think, and is one of the fastest growing crimes around the world. As more and more of the average person’s life takes place online, identity fraud becomes easier to commit.

It’s as important to have identity theft protection as home security or auto insurance. Just like those things, it’s not necessarily required or even recommended that you get the most comprehensive or expensive protection money can buy, but it’s important to have something. Even the most basic identity theft protection is better than nothing, and it only gets better from there if you choose to invest further.

Criteria
Identity Guard
Allstate Identity Protection

Ease of Use: Winner – Identity Guard

This is an easy win for Identity Guard, though not by as wide of a margin as in other categories.

Identity Guard has one of the best web layouts in the industry. Its greatest strength is in how much information it gives you up front on the first page, without being overwhelming or looking cluttered.

Identity Guard dashboard

This is combined with it being easier to navigate than most options, and having lightning fast loading times. It’s all around very nice to use.

Identity Protection, by contrast, immediately steps into a few design pitfalls.

allstate dashboard

It’s functional, but very threadbare, with a minimal amount of information; most of which isn’t highly relevant anyway. The thing that annoys me most is that of the two pieces of relevant information given to you by the service…one of them doesn’t function properly, and rarely loads in properly.

Navigating the tabs works fine, but it’s a little slow and hangs on my computer. Overall, it could be better, but at least it works okay.

Winner: Identity Guard

Identity Guard has one of the best web layouts in the industry. Its greatest strength is in how much information it gives you up front on the first page, without being overwhelming or looking cluttered.

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Monitoring and Alerts: Winner – Identity Guard

This is where Identity Protection starts to completely fall apart, and I have to say up front that I cannot recommend this service to anyone, for any reason.

I have tested a large variety of identity theft protection services, from the large to the small, those with pedigrees and those without. Identity Protection may very well have the worst monitoring of any out there.

To its credit, the breadth of monitoring tools it offers is impressive. It has all of the basic tools you’d expect, like:

  • Bank account and credit card monitoring
  • Data breach and dark web monitoring
  • Student loan monitoring
  • High risk transaction monitoring
  • 401(k) transaction monitoring

While Identity Guard offers more options (including sex offender registry monitoring, address change monitoring, and home title monitoring, among others), Allstate covers most of the important bases.

At least in theory.

When I put my information into Identity Guard for the first time, I got a number of alerts within seconds, and a smattering of other alerts over time, as seen here:

Allstate turned up…nothing. At first I expected that perhaps the service might be a bit slow. I’ve reviewed other options that have slow but accurate monitoring, and those can be fine.

Allstate gave me zero alerts. Ever. Over the full course of testing and beyond, and over a month of waiting…still no alerts.

We could essentially end the review here. Allstate’s identity protection gets a failing grade as a service. It is utterly worthless.

But let’s look and see if something can be salvaged from this wreckage.

Winner: Identity Guard

Allstate gave me zero alerts. Ever. Over the full course of testing and beyond, and over a month of waiting…still no alerts.

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Threat Resolution Services: Winner – Allstate Identity Protection

Credit where it’s due, Allstate’s customer support is quite good, offering fast and friendly advice, as often as you want. 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

This is great, and is much better than Identity Guard’s 8 AM to 11 PM (EST) hours on weekdays and 9 AM to 6 PM availability on Saturday.

There’s not much more to say here, as neither service offers any odd side benefits you wouldn’t find from someone else.

Winner: Allstate Identity Protection

Allstate’s customer support is quite good, offering fast and friendly advice, as often as you want. 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Additional Services: Winner – Allstate Identity Protection

Identity Guard offers nothing, while Allstate offers something, making it win by default. Allstate Identity Protection offers a list of quick links to services that allow you to reduce the number of solicitation calls you get. These are things you can find online easily enough, but having all of these links in one place is pretty convenient, and nice to have.

Winner: Allstate Identity Protection

Allstate Identity Protection offers a list of quick links to services that allow you to reduce the number of solicitation calls you get.

Cost: Winner – Identity Guard

You would think a service that doesn’t have the decency to function would at least be mercifully cheap. You’d be wrong.

Allstate Identity Protection is going to run you a decent chunk for its “highest quality” protection.

Essentials
Premier
Price
Individual
Essentials
$9.99 /month
Premier
$17.99 /month
Family
Essentials
$18.99 /month
Premier
$34.99c /month

You might notice that their family protection is just shy of double the price of their individual protection, meaning you save effectively nothing on the family plan as well.

Compare this with Identity Guard.

Value
Total
Ultra
Price
Individual Monthly
Value
$7.20 /month
$86.40/year
Total
$15.99 /month
$191.88/year
Ultra
$23.99 /month
Individual Annual
Value
$6.67 /month
$80.04/year
Total
$15.99 /month
$159.96/year
Ultra
$20.00 /month
Family Monthly
Value
$11.99 /month
$143.88/year
Total
$23.99 /month
$287.88/year
Ultra
$31.99 /month
Family Annual
Value
$10.00 /month
$120.00/year
Total
$20.00 /month
$240.00/year
Ultra
$26.67 /month

In addition to a more comprehensive pricing scale, you might notice that Identity Guard’s top level of protection is only a little more expensive than Allstate’s, and it’s actually a little bit cheaper in monthly cost if you go for their family plan options.

This is on top of Identity Guard actually working, which just rubs salt in the wound.

Winner: Identity Guard

Identity Guard’s top level of protection is only a little more expensive than Allstate’s, and it’s actually a little bit cheaper in monthly cost if you go for their family plan options.

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Insurance: Winner – Identity Guard

Allstate is a company that specializes in insurance of various kinds. Naturally, this means that the insurance included with their identity protection plan is not only worse than Identity Guard, it is significantly below the expected value of the market.

Their Essentials plan offers $50, 000 in stolen funds reimbursement, while their Premier plan goes up to $500, 000. This is on top of a $1 million expense coverage for things like lawyer’s fees.

Identity Guard, by contrast, offers $1 million in coverage for both sides, totaling up to a potential $2 million in insurance (up to a million for lost funds, and another million in expenses). This is very nice, but not as impressive as you might think. That $1 million coverage is actually pretty close to the industry standard in terms of insurance coverage.

Winner: Identity Guard

Offers $1 million in coverage for both sides, totaling up to a potential $2 million in insurance (up to a million for lost funds, and another million in expenses).

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Conclusion: Winner – Identity Guard

identity guard

I do not typically attempt to be so unrelentingly negative in product reviews or comparisons. In most cases, I attempt to find the best features of each option and showcase them. Even if I’m down on the service as a whole due to certain shortcomings, there’s often some kind of merit to be found in even poor services, as a lot of the time they fail to be good identity theft protection due to focusing on the wrong features (features that might actually appeal to certain people who have a need for them).

Allstate’s Identity Protection service, however, fails on almost every metric. Not just in comparison to Identity Guard (which most options fall well short of), but to any other service I could name. I genuinely cannot think of a single service on the market, out of the over a dozen I’ve tried and reviewed, that I would recommend Allstate’s Identity Protection service over.

Stay very far away from this.

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