We all know that feeling of panic.
The one you get when you realize you left your credit card at the gas pump.
Two days ago.
The first thing that runs through your mind is, did someone find your card?
Are they using it?
And worse: are they trying to steal your identity?
With identity theft on the rise, consumers are increasingly more aware and fearful of having their identity stolen.
In fact, approximately 15 million people across the US have their identity compromised each year.
Fraudsters can use your identity to open accounts, buy property, and even file taxes.
So this isn't simply a matter of having some unauthorized charges on a credit card.
Identity theft is serious business that could ruin your life.
Lifelock came up with what it believes to be a solution to this ever-growing crisis.
In this review, you'll learn about Lifelock, how it works, and whether it's something worth considering to protect you from identity theft.
What LifeLock is and how it can make a difference in your life
Lifelock is a company based out of Tempe, Arizona that was co-founded in 2005 by Robert Maynard Jr. and Todd Davis.
Its purpose? To protect people from identity theft using data, patented technology, and proactive alerts.
Lifelock's protection system constantly monitors your credit card and non-credit related financial tools for potentially fraudulent activity.
Additionally, it uses Norton Security as it works to protect your devices.
Lifelock's services are geared toward consumers 18 and older who don't have the time or the know-how to monitor their own credit.
But individuals are not all that LifeLock helps.
It's also designed for businesses.
Remember the Target breach? Or the one suffered by Home Depot?
You've seen how these types of catastrophic incidents set fear in consumers and create havoc for businesses.
Lifelock has something called a Data Breach Response Plan for businesses to help them immediately respond to a data breach.
How LifeLock works to protect you 24/7
To get started, you have to sign up with Lifelock on its website.
This should only take a few minutes.
You'll be asked to complete a form that asks for some basic information to start your membership.
You'll also be asked to install Norton Security, if you sign up for it.
This can be downloaded on up to five of your devices.
Once you have everything set up, Lifelock will scan all of your personal information and let you know of potential security threats to your identity.
In the meantime, Norton Security will run on your devices and protect you from external threats.
But as we all know, even the most perfectly-laid plans can sometimes fail.
For example, your identity might still be stolen, or you may even lose one of your devices.
But Lifelock has a plan for those situations too.
If your identity is stolen or your device becomes infected with a virus, Lifelock will work toward fixing the problem.
Say if in the process you still end up become victim to identity theft, Lifelock will assign an Identity Restoration Specialist to you from beginning to end to help you reclaim access to your accounts and identity and repair the damage.
It will also refund you the money for your Lifelock subscription.
Plus, it will reimburse you for funds stolen up to the limit of the plan you signed up for.
Products and services tailored to safeguard you at every corner
We know Lifelock protects your identity. But what exactly does it use to make that happen?
It monitors your credit files, alerts you to any problems, and scans your social security number for unauthorized activity.
Then it goes above and beyond all that and offers much more, including the following.
Lifelock Privacy Monitor Tool. This tool helps limit public exposure of your private information.
Dark Web Monitoring. Identity thieves often sell your information on what are called dark websites, or websites that are hard-to-find.
Lifelock monitors these sites and alerts you if it finds your information on them.
Lost Wallet Protection. If your wallet gets lost or stolen, Lifelock will help you replace or cancel all your important cards.
Such as your driver's license, credit cards, social security card, insurance card and others.
LifeLock Identity Alert System. Lifelock will send you alerts through its patented system by phone, text, or email about the status of your identity safety.
Lawyers and experts. If you find yourself a victim of theft, Lifelock will give you access to the lawyers and experts you might need for your case.
Court record scans. Lifelock checks court records to make sure you're not falsely being shown as having been arrested or convicted in cases or incidents you weren't involved in.
Identity restoration. An identity restoration expert will be assigned to you from start to finish to help you restore your identity if it's ever stolen or compromised.
Fictitious identity monitoring. Lifelock protects you from criminals who try to use your social security number to open accounts or commit fraud under a false identity.
Credit monitoring. LifeLock will constantly monitor your credit file at one leading credit bureau and notify you if it detects fraud.
Breach notifications. Lifelock will also alert you as soon as it hears of a large-scale breach.
Reasonable rates for exceptional value, protection, and peace of mind
Lifelock offers three different plans to help keep you protected that come either with or without Norton, depending on your preference.
LifeLock Standard. It costs $9.99/month, has $25,000 in reimbursements for stolen funds, and gives you SSN and credit alerts.
With Norton, it's $9.99/month for the first year and then $12.99/month.
LifeLock Advantage. It costs $19.99/month. With Norton, it's $19.99/month for the first year and then $24.99/month.
The plan includes $100,000 in reimbursements for stolen funds, SSN and credit alerts, alerts for bank and credit card activity and alerts for crimes in your name.
LifeLock Ultimate Plus. It costs $29.99/month. With Norton, it's $29.99/month for the first year and then $34.99/month.
The plan includes $1 million in reimbursements for stolen funds, bank and credit card alerts, alerts for crimes in your name, three credit reports/credit scores and 401k monitoring.
All of the above plans protect up to five devices.
Around-the-clock customer service agents who are eager to serve you
LifeLock's customer service agents are available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year to answer any questions or to help guide you through any situations that may arise.
Customer service can be reached at 1-800-543-3562.
You can also log into your member portal, if you're already a member, to get answers to frequently asked questions or for other self-service options.
Pros, Cons, and Reviews
Strengths and weaknesses you can anticipate from LifeLock
Many people might question the legitimacy of LifeLock.
Is it a scam? Is it real?
The good news is that this company is completely legit.
And just like any other company, it comes with a fair share of pros and cons.
The pros include that it's truly great for people who don't have time to monitor their credit.
Lifelock's 24-hour customer service makes it easy to get in touch with an agent day or night, plus its interface is extremely easy to navigate.
If you're on the fence about giving it a try, rest assured that LifeLock also comes with a 60-day
money back guarantee.
On the flip side, LifeLock doesn't come cheap.
In fact, it can get quite pricey, especially if you consider that there are no discounts for family plans.
Every individual has to buy a separate plan, which can tally up to quite a bit of money every month.
The other criticism it faces is that it doesn't necessarily protect your identity, but simply gives you the tools to respond to identity theft.
So it's not truly proactive, as many may mistakenly believe.
Plus, it doesn't come with a free trial period for you to try it out before you buy, although the 60-day money back guarantee could help to offset that gripe.
As you weigh out those pros and cons, let's also look at some great and not-so-good reviews about LifeLock.
Honest reviews from customers like you
The more satisfied of its customers say they love LifeLock for the constant improvements and investments it makes in its technology and its exceptional customer service.
There are consumers who appreciate them as trailblazers in the space of identity protection, and believe that its pricing is affordable for most.
Also, consumers say they started getting useful alerts from Lifelock within minutes of activating their accounts, which they found impressive and reassuring.
On the flip side, its critics claim that the reports from the credit bureau aren't really worth it because LifeLock provides reporting from only Equifax.
Also, customers complain that LifeLock offers less monitoring in some areas in comparison to its competitors.
So if credit monitoring is one of your top priorities, it might be a good idea to shop around and compare features, pricing, and perks before you decide to sign up with them.
Answers to commonly asked questions to help you learn more about LifeLock
- Why did LifeLock get in legal trouble and have to pay a settlement?
LifeLock faced allegations that it wasn't offering the kind of security it was promising in its advertising, so it paid a $100 million settlement for deceptive or misleading advertising.
- Will LifeLock sell my information to a third party?
LifeLock does share information with its affiliates and third-party service providers to improve its products and service offerings.
However, I couldn't find any reference to LifeLock selling client information.
- Why does LifeLock report to the three credit bureaus?
There's no information supporting that LifeLock reports to any of the credit bureaus or even all three.
- What happens when LifeLock has an alert about someone trying to steal my identity?
It will monitor use of your personal information and will alert you by text, phone or email as soon as it spots threats to your identity.
If you confirm the activity as fraudulent, your LifeLock team will activate its procedures to protect you.
- What steps do I need to take once I have been alerted about possible fraud?
First, alert the credit bureaus and also any credit card companies that may be impacted.
Putting an alert on your credit files can help stop criminals from doing anything with your credit, like opening fraudulent accounts or damaging your credit.
- Are the authorities notified about the fraud being committed?
No, you'll have to notify them yourself.
- I have frozen all my credit cards and social security. When should I consider removing the freeze?
Lifting the freeze probably won't do you much good, especially if your information was compromised.
While a credit freeze won't affect your life too significantly, it can allow you to have peace of mind that no one will be able to use your information to open accounts.
Try to leave the freeze on your accounts for as long as possible to discourage such activity.
If possible, leave it on until it expires, and then continue to monitor your credit for suspicious activity.
- What are some of the free ways that I can protect myself without having to sign up for LifeLock services?
Many of the services LifeLock offers, like credit reports, fraud alerts and bank monitoring, are things you can opt to do on your own for free if you don't want to pay money.
LifeLock is meant to save time for those who don't want to do all these things on their own.
- I've heard Credit Karma offers free credit monitoring. Why should I pay for LifeLock services? What is different about it?
While both offer credit monitoring services, LifeLock offers a more comprehensive package of monitoring, tracking up to five devices too.
It also provides you reimbursement for fraudulent use.
- What does the $1 Million protection package include? Are there any situations when it wouldn't be applied to me?
It covers every possible protection that LifeLock offers.
Including but not limited to credit monitoring, notifications of a data breach, lost wallet protection, dark web monitoring and much more.
The key difference is that it reimburses you up to $1 million for stolen funds.
It also provides monitoring of and credit reports from all three bureaus instead of just one.
Exclusions do apply, for example, this won't cover you for any dishonest acts you participated in.
To get a full list of exclusions, you can visit the Legal section of LifeLock's website.
- Who are the specialists who work for LifeLock? How are they accredited?
These individuals are trained to provide high-quality customers service and develop close relationships with customers.
Unfortunately, the LifeLock site doesn't mention if or how these associates are accredited.
- Since Norton acquired LifeLock, is there anti-virus protection included in the services?
Yes, LifeLock offers its three protection plans with Norton Security software, with up to five devices protected.
- What is the difference between credit freeze and credit monitoring?
With a credit freeze, you'll need to supply a pin or answer questions to validate your identity before you're able to open new accounts or have someone pull your credit report.
This blocks your credit.
With monitoring, your credit is simply monitored, and you're notified of fraudulent activity.
- What technology does LifeLock use to determine that the alert is someone else and not me?
LifeLock likely uses sophisticated computer algorithms in order to flag certain credit activity as suspicious then it will notify you first through text, email or phone of the suspicious transaction.
It's up to you to confirm whether or not the activity was authorized by you or someone else and then inform them accordingly.
- Can I cancel my services at any time?
Yes, you can cancel your services by calling 1-844-488-4540.
Your LifeLock account will be closed out when your membership period draws to an end, if you're in a month-to-month membership plan.
Contact LifeLock to find out about how refunds or credit will be handled for your account, as this can vary from person to person.
- How user-friendly is the app? And does it work for all operating systems (iOS, Android, extra)?
The LifeLock app appears to be user-friendly, allowing you to get notifications on the go, respond immediately to alerts, and access support quickly.
It should work for all operating systems.
- Does Lifelock have promotional codes I can use to purchase its packages?
Yes, it does offer promotional codes that can be redeemed on its payments page when you sign up.
- How does Lifelock restore my reputation and credit?
LifeLock is a monitoring service that supports you through issues with identity theft and security breaches.
But it doesn't promise to repair bad credit or problems that arise from identity theft or fraud.
- If I have not received an alert but think I have been a victim of identity theft, should I call Lifelock to confirm with them?
Yes, you could call LifeLock customer service to ask them if they've seen any suspicious activity, but also one of the first steps you should take is to notify your banks and the credit bureaus.
- How do I know I need protection?
Identity theft is on the rise, so you should definitely have measures in place to monitor and protect your credit and personal information.
However, if you're not able to do it on your own, you should consider other measures, like LifeLock.
A legitimate product for people who desire identity protection
If you're someone who doesn't have time to look after your credit and monitor it to make sure everything looks good, then Lifelock is probably a good service to consider.
Its alerts and monitoring, along with 24/7 customer service can certainly help make life easier in case you're ever the victim in a security breach or if your identity is stolen.
The additional support in the form of attorneys and staff dedicated to your case can help lift a lot of the burden and stress of having your identity compromised.
However, if you're someone who has the time and know-how to monitor your credit, you'd probably be better off saving that money every month.
In reality, much of the monitoring that LifeLock does you could do completely for free on your own, if you choose.
Have you ever been the victim of identity theft?
What do you think of LifeLock and its services?
Share your experience and your thoughts with us in the comments below.