IdentityIQ is famous for its extensive credit monitoring services. Media platforms and independent cybersecurity bloggers almost always recommend it to readers who want to improve their credit scores.
Admittedly, frequent credit reports sound appealing. However, not many debtors need in-depth, long-term data monitoring, especially if they’ve never fallen victim to cyberattacks. In fact, most do well with just annual reports.
Don’t worry if you can’t reach a decision yet. We also want to learn more about IdentityIQ, so our team has researched official resources, independent reviews, and cybersecurity blogs to assess everything the brand offers apart from credit monitoring.
By the end of this piece, you’ll know whether or not to sign up for an account.
Please read without skipping. We’ll clarify a common misconception about which device protection and cybersecurity features come with the full-suite plan of IdentityIQ. You’ll end up disappointed if you don’t read the fine print.
Let’s dive into your IdentityIQ review!
- IdentityIQ offers the most extensive credit monitoring service on the market. It tracks all purchases, credit card transactions, loan applications, payday loans, and new phone lines registered under your name. Most other ID theft tools are limited to banking products.
- IdentityIQ is one of the few ID theft monitoring tools that offer monthly credit reports. Most systems only give their clients 1 to 4 four reports per annum.
- The mid-tier plan of IdentityIQ doesn’t offer value for your money. You’ll find several other more comprehensive, robust packages at that price point, so we can’t recommend it.
- IdentityIQ doesn’t offer refunds or free trials. Meanwhile, most alternative ID theft tools provide one to two months of money-back guarantees.
- IdentityIQ best suits recent ID theft victims. Monitor your credit reports closely so that you can spot signs of fraud before crooks do too much damage.
- Debtors who want to improvise their credit scores also consider IdentityIQ. Disputing negative marks in your reports, paying off all your bills, managing your debt-to-income ratio, and establishing a good rapport with your bank goes a long way in improving credit ratings.
In this article
What is IdentityIQ?
IdentityIQ is a subsidiary of the cybersecurity company IDIQ. It was founded in 2009 and marketed as a membership-based PII and credit monitoring tool.
In 2017, Scott Hermann joined IdentityIQ as the CEO. Not much changed with the company, but the board has high expectations considering he has 25+ years of industry experience.
IdentityIQ key features
IdentityIQ is widely known for its credit monitoring. Cybersecurity blogs and independent review platforms praise its sophisticated system for producing accurate results.
However, you don’t have to take reviews at face value. To assess how IdentityIQ will impact your financial situation, check out its key features and services yourself, which include:
Credit report and score delivery
Credit report and score delivery services aren’t rare. You can even request the documents yourself because credit bureaus provide a free copy per annum.
However, IdentityIQ takes credit report delivery to the next level. Its full-suite package gives you access to 12 copies a year, which you can scan, peruse, and dispute yourself.
Admittedly, some might find monthly reporting excessive. The average American carries four credit cards, which they can easily monitor through bank statements.
With that said, you shouldn’t blindly overlook this service. We think you would benefit from pulling monthly credit reports if you’re:
- Working to boost your credit score fast
- Filing disputes against negative marks
- The victim of ID theft
- Doubtful about the security of your personal information
If you still have reservations about monthly credit report delivery, we suggest trying out the service for a few months first. Once you notice significant results, consider upgrading to an annual plan.
Apart from delivering credit reports, IdentityIQ also monitors them. It sends alerts about unusual transactions and applications using its client’s personal information.
Again, several ID theft brands do credit monitoring. What separates IdentityIQ from the rest, however, is that it carries one of the most sophisticated, accurate tracking technologies on the market.
It catches various transactions, including credit card purchases, bank loan applications, payday loans, new phone lines, credit inquiries, and outstanding credit accounts. Alternatively, other brands are limited to monitoring banking products.
IdentityIQ reports all changes to your credit and personal profile. You’ll receive real-time warnings containing complete incident reports, which you can also use to file ID theft reports.
At a basic level, every ID theft prevention brand monitors the same PII. After all, crooks will likely target your legal name, banking information, government ID numbers, and, of course, Social Security Number.
However, tools don’t scan the same places. While most are limited to public records, the sophisticated monitoring system of IdentityIQ scours online and offline documents for:
- Court orders
- Criminal charges
- Address changes
- Personal information updates
- Hard and soft credit pulls
- New credit accounts
Reports will also show where your data appeared. We find this feature helpful because other ID theft monitoring tools withhold the source and location of their scanned threats.
Fraudulent transactions occur more often than most people realize. Reports show that 42 million U.S. citizens lost over $50 billion to ID theft criminals and hackers in 2021.
ID theft only seems distant until it happens. The idea that crooks will never misuse your personal information is nothing more than wishful thinking.
Remember: prevention is better than cure. However, if criminals have already taken over your accounts, damage mitigation serves as the next best course of action.
You can file ID theft reports straight to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). Although convenient, understand that the FTC will only provide some level of assistance.
We think most clients would benefit from ID restoration services. You’d have a much better chance of recovering lost data and tracking perpetrators with the help of a skilled specialist.
Also, considering the experience and reputability of IdentityIQ, you can rest assured that you’re in good hands.
ID theft insurance
Statistics show that ID theft victims lose an average of $4,800. However, note that losses could also add up to five or six digits, depending on the information you lose.
Fortunately, ID theft insurance helps cover losses. As its name suggests, it compensates ID theft victims for the money needed to recover data, consult attorneys, and file reports, among other expenses.
Several cybersecurity companies carry ID theft insurance. When assessing your options, we encourage taking tenure and reputability into consideration.
Only get insurance from established companies. New insurers and startups might not have the financial stability to back their insurance policies—which could pose a problem if their clients get involved in massive data breaches.
IdentityIQ offers standard family protection. You can use it to track and secure the personal information of up to three kids.
Child ID theft prevention is pretty common nowadays. However, what sets IdentityIQ apart is that it lets clients add any of their relatives to their family plans.
Alternatively, other brands have rigid requirements. For instance, some might require you to get another plan altogether for family members over 18.
Note: You’ll need to purchase Bitdefender to get extra parental controls.
Credit score simulator
As its name suggests, a credit score simulator lets you check how different banking transactions will affect your credit score. You’ll find this feature helpful if you’re preparing to take out a sizable loan.
For instance, let’s say you want to buy a house. At least six months before doing so, use a credit score simulator to see if your current rating can accommodate a low-interest mortgage from a trusted commercial bank.
If not, work toward improving your credit score. Otherwise, you’ll get stuck with a lengthy, high-interest rate policy and waste all your money on excess fees.
Junk mail and do-not-call lists
IdentityIQ filters and blocks spam messages. You can configure the settings for more specific results, but expect the system to target marketers calling, emailing, and texting you shady offers.
We find this feature somewhat helpful. However, note that you can easily ignore and opt out of newsletters yourself.
You can add Bitdefender to your IdentityIQ plan for anti-malware protection, safe internet browsing, and VPN services. The feature costs an extra $2 to $3 per month.
Although inexpensive, we can’t wholly recommend this add-on feature. You can get more extensive, robust cybersecurity tools for the same price elsewhere, so you don’t need to limit yourself.
IdentityIQ plans and pricing
We appreciate that IdentityIQ offers diverse plans. Its entry-level plan only costs half as much as its full-suite option, so you’ll save a lot if you don’t need all the bells and whistles.
Of course, we encourage going beyond pricing. Instead of blindly opting for the cheapest option, go through the features of each package and see which ones suit your situation.
Secure Plus is the entry-level plan of IdentityIQ. It comes with annual credit reports, 1-bureau credit monitoring, $1 million ID theft insurance, opt-out IQ, and ID restoration.
Admittedly, it doesn’t come with many features. However, you’d be hard-pressed to find another reliable, trusted ID theft prevention tool at the same price point.
Overall, we think Secure Plus offers decent protection. You’ll find it helpful if you want standard PII monitoring without breaking the bank.
Secure Pro serves as the mid-range plan of IdentityIQ. It comes with all the entry-level plan’s features, plus bi-annual credit reports, 3-bureau credit monitoring, and criminal ID theft alerts.
Admittedly, Secure Pro provides more extensive monitoring. However, it also costs around $10 more; you’ll find plenty of other more comprehensive and extensive options at that price point.
Secure Max is the full-suite ID theft prevention package of IdentityIQ. It comes with monthly 3-bureau credit reports, enhanced credit monitoring, credit score simulators, $25k family ID theft insurance, $1 million individual ID theft insurance, and ID restoration backed by Limited Power of Attorney (LPOA).
Secure Max definitely provides the most value out of these three plans. We think you’ll find it helpful if your information was recently exposed or if you execute sizable transactions regularly,
Just note that the plan comes with a steep price tag, so we can’t recommend it to creditors who only need minimal routine credit monitoring.
Important: None of these plans come with Bitdefender. If you want the extra cybersecurity features (i.e., Premium VPN, Microphone monitor, Safepay) we mentioned earlier, expect your monthly bill to increase by around $2 to $3.
Don’t get us wrong—additional fees aren’t necessarily bad. However, we think companies should mention them right from the get-go so that prospects can manage their expectations.
The IdentityIQ website only touches on the terms and conditions of Bitdefender. Based on reviews, some clients were disappointed because they only found out about the extra fees after signing up for an account.
To make things worse, IdentityIQ doesn’t have refunds. So you’re stuck with your contract, regardless of whether or not you are fully aware of its limitations.
IdentityIQ user experience
We’ve established that IdentityIQ carries one of the most sophisticated monitoring systems today. It even tracks small transactions that other tools often miss (i.e., payday loans, new phone lines).
However, functionality requires more than just robust backend technologies. To help you gauge whether you’d benefit from IdentityIQ, we’ll give you first-hand insights into the overall user experience it provides.
So, what is it like being an IdentityIQ client? Let’s make an assessment based on the following factors:
Even complete beginners can easily navigate IdentityIQ’s website. Once you log in to your account, you’ll see an extensive navigation bar guiding you to the site’s different features, services, and resources.
Also, all notifications and warnings are very visible. We find this helpful because other tools will require you to visit specific pages, which might cause some alerts to get overlooked.
IdentityIQ has a functional platform. Its PII monitoring system only asks for your information once, the credit monitoring section automatically delivers your reports, and you can easily access various cybersecurity resources.
Also, we like that IdentityIQ has a reliable customer service team. Based on reviews, the company responds promptly to various concerns, from product inquiries to insurance claims.
Mobile app interface
IdentityIQ doesn’t have a mobile app. Although it’s not a major turn-off, you might find it weird since most ID theft prevention tools nowadays focus on functionality between mobile and web platforms.
You can still access the site using mobile browsers, of course. Just manage your expectations because some features and services might not function seamlessly on your mobile device.
Top alternatives to IdentityIQ
We just finished discussing the pricing options, features, strengths, and limitations of IdentityIQ. You can now make an informed, objective decision about whether or not to sign up for a plan.
Again, we think IdentityIQ provides excellent credit monitoring. However, if you don’t need to check your credit reports as often and want a more robust set of tools, don’t shy from exploring other options.
Dozens of cybersecurity brands do ID theft protection nowadays. To jumpstart your research, we even rounded up the top three most widely trusted companies on the market:
Although IdentityIQ excels in credit monitoring, it lacks cybersecurity features. You might have to purchase other tools to compensate for its limitations and weaknesses.
If you want an all-in-one data privacy system and don’t mind paying extra for it, consider IdentityForce. It offers robust, comprehensive cybersecurity features.
Apart from monitoring your credit reports and personal information, it also comes with a password manager, parental control system, VPN, and payday loan monitor, among other extras.
Its individual plans start at $17.99 and $23.99 per month.
IdentityIQ offers reliable ID restoration. You can rest assured that a specialist based in the U.S. will assist you if you find yourself the victim of an ID theft attack.
However, if you want more extensive support, try IDShield. It takes its ID restoration to the next level by pairing you with professional private investigators.
You can use their support to come up with case evidence. That way, the court, FTC, and local law enforcement authorities will have a better shot at tracking down perpetrators.
Its individual and family plans start at $14.95 and $29.95 a month, respectively.
If you feel that IdentityIQ lacks too many features but don’t want to pay the premium rates of IdentityForce, check out Aura. It’s very similar to IdentityForce and costs half the price.
For just $12 a month, you’ll get extensive credit and PII monitoring, plus all the basic cybersecurity features like VPN, safe browsing, anti-malware protection, and password management.
Is IdentityIQ worth it?
You’d be hard-pressed to find another ID theft company that does credit monitoring better than IdentityIQ. Apart from providing monthly credit reports, it also tracks crooks who misuse stolen information for loan applications, credit card purchases, payday loans, and even new phone lines.
However, whether or not you’ll benefit from these services depends on your current needs. After all, not everyone needs extensive credit monitoring.
If your banking information was recently exposed, IdentityIQ could help prevent various fraudulent transactions and mitigate potential losses. Report crooks before they do too much damage.
On the contrary, clients who only need PII and credit monitoring for standard cybersecurity practices might not need tracking as frequently. Instead, look into more robust ID theft plans that offer more diverse services.
Either way, we urge you to reassess your needs and double-check your choices because IdentityIQ doesn’t have free trials. Once you open an account, you must commit to it.