Identity theft is the stuff of nightmares.
For those of you who are unaware as to what it is, identity theft is when your personal information (like your bank account and Social Security number) is stolen and used to further the financial gain of the person who committed the theft of your identity. When identity theft goes undetected, the victims can suffer irreparable damages, such as lowered credit scores, loss of income, and overall endangerment of your financial reputation.
Unfortunately, it can happen to anyone. Even you.
As scammers and computer hackers grow in numbers and use sneakier tactics, it is important to protect your personal information and assets to the best of your ability. The primary way to get the most up-to-date protection is through an identity theft program that will not only monitor your accounts for suspicious activity but will also help to reverse any damages should anything get through their defenses.
According to Top Ten Reviews, here are the top 3 identity theft programs in the areas of monitoring and notifications, recovery assistance, and information protection.
IdentityForce tracks a wider range of databases and activity than most identity theft programs. They monitor public record databases, medical insurance, loans, lease records, and sex offender registries. One novelty feature allows you to set a certain dollar amount in the program and any activity above the indicated dollar amount will send a notification to you. IdentityForce will send fraud alerts to all the credit bureaus, provide regular reports for all three bureaus (most only provide for one bureau), and give 24/7 customer support by phone. However, they can’t guarantee all suspicious activity will be monitored, and they will only cover up to $2,000 for travel expenses.
LifeLock is one of the most well-known identity theft programs—and for good reason. They monitor a variety of different accounts and databases, including black market sites. Through text and their mobile app, they can send notifications to you if they see any kind of suspicious activity. In addition, they also provide support to reverse any fraudulent charges. A word of caution: LifeLock is one of the more expensive services ($29.99/month), and they may not be able to monitor all credit card transactions.
IdentityGuard offers more comprehensive monitoring similar to the top-of-the-line programs but at a lower price point ($16.99/month). Other identity theft programs at the same price range charge extra for credit monitoring and credit history. IdentityGuard covers both of these as well as criminal records and driver’s license information. They will even remove your information from junk mail lists. However, IdentityGuard does not monitor sex offender registries or send fraud reports to the credit bureaus for you, and they do not provide 24/7 phone support.
Don’t Let It Happen To You
Identity theft is scary, but it is preventable and reversible with vigilance and the right support. If enrolling into an identity theft program will help ease your anxiety, do it. Peace of mind is priceless.
Do you want to know more about protecting your assets?Contact us at Hayden, Biel & Associates by calling (626) 529-8347, or email me directly at [email protected] so we can talk about your concerns and your options.
About Haydel, Biel & Associates
Haydel, Biel & Associates is an independent financial advisory firm serving individuals and families near Pasadena, California. The firm was founded in 2004 by Chris Haydel and Ricky Biel with a desire to provide unbiased, client-centered, community-based financial advice. Together, they have built a practice that has grown into a family of caring, smart professionals committed to blending proven investment methodologies with creative financial technologies that make it easier than ever to accomplish your goals. They strive to keep things simple and fun to give their clients peace of mind and alleviate financial stress. HBA Wealth takes care of their clients’ needs first and foremost and goes the extra mile to make their clients’ finances grow. To meet and see how the HBA Wealth team may be able to help, contact them today at (626) 529-8347 or email Ricky directly at [email protected].