Last Updated on August 24, 2023
Hours of research on product features, twenty minutes quizzing customer support, and three weeks of testing revealed that Aura is better than Identity Guard for total identity protection.
But that’s hardly a surprise.
Aura and Identity Guard come from the same company, and these sister products are both top quality. But Aura is the newer model, and it has several features that Identity Guard lacks.
I wouldn’t call Identity Guard bad, and in some cases, it might be worth considering. Aura, though, is outstanding in just about every way.
- Looking for the best credit monitoring, identity theft protection, and fraud alerts.
- Looking for a personalized security score to help you understand your financial security.
- If you want to access your credit score from Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion – for free.
- If you want an all-in-one comprehensive identity protection solution.
It comes with award-winning identity theft and credit monitoring, 24/7 access to an expert threat resolution team, and a long list of features that do more than just keep your family safe from identity thieves – they also protect from cyberbullies, scammers, and online predators.
So, most people are going to choose Aura without question. But, as I mentioned, there are some who might find that Identity Guard better suits their family’s budget and needs.
That’s why I wrote this review – to give you all the information on these two identity protection services. That way, you can make the right decision for your family.
The real difference lies in the way that Aura and Identity Guard package and price their products. Each product offers a range of packages and options that easily fit a wide range of individual and family needs and budgets. As we continue on through our article, we will show you the options in Aura vs. Identity Guard.
We hope that our evaluation of the two products will help you select the right identity theft protection for you or your family.
And The Winner Is…
Identity Guard vs Aura: Head-to-Head Comparison
Award-winning identity theft and credit monitoring that’s both comprehensive and accurate.
Accurate but less comprehensive monitoring
24/7/365 U.S.-based customer service with an average of seven years of industry experience.
Limited customer service hours.
Flexible family plans allow up to five adults and unlimited children with comprehensive parental controls and safe gaming features.
Family plans allow for up to five adults and unlimited children but don’t include family-focused features
$1 million in theft insurance coverage per adult with ALL plans.
$1 million in theft insurance coverage TOTAL.
Ease of Use
A little cluttered but easy to use.
Very similar to Aura, easy to use but could be better.
Online Safety Features
Includes an exhaustive list of safety features, including a VPN, password manager, antivirus software, and more.
Includes a password manager and safe browser only.
Price makes sense given inclusions, discount code available.
Very low-priced “bare-bones” option available.
Monitoring: Winner – Aura
Let’s start with monitoring capabilities.
This is perhaps the most important aspect of an identity protection service. If a service can’t tell you when your information is leaked during a data breach or otherwise, you’re just blindly waiting for things to go wrong.
Ideally, your identity protection service will monitor the dark web, public records, and your financial accounts for signs of fraud.
For a company to succeed here, it needs monitoring services that are:
Aura is all of the above.
Identity Guard offers the same accuracy and timeliness, but as you’ll see, it’s not quite as comprehensive. And so, Aura wins this category overall.
Identity Guard’s top-tier, Ultra plan and Aura look very similar. Both offer:
Aura goes a step beyond here by also including auto title monitoring, though. And, if you’re comparing any of Identity Guard’s other plans to Aura, Identity Guard falls very short.
Its low-level, Value plan, and mid-level Total plan only offer dark web monitoring and high-risk transaction monitoring. They both leave out the important public record monitoring services (Sex offender registry monitoring, criminal records monitoring, home title monitoring, and USPS address change monitoring).
Clearly, Identity Guard is less comprehensive than Aura when it comes to identity monitoring.
However, both services are excellent at catching vulnerabilities. Identity Guard and Aura both found nine unique dark web alerts during testing. And their initial dark web scans were complete in a matter of minutes.
That means both of these services are accurate and timely – at least when it comes to identity monitoring. But identity monitoring is only part of the puzzle. If I’m going to recommend a service, it also needs to offer thorough credit and financial monitoring.
Credit and Financial
Here, again, Identity Guard’s top-tier plan and Aura look almost identical. Both include:
Aura goes a little further by offering a credit score tracker, which is nice, but overall the services are about the same in this category.
Once again, the big difference comes when you look at Identity Guard’s lower-tiered plans. With their mid-tier, Total plan, you get bank account monitoring, three-bureau credit monitoring, and monthly scores – but that’s it. And Identity Guard’s low-level Value plan offers no credit or financial monitoring.
I want to be perfectly clear about this – you can absolutely monitor your credit and finances yourself. You can also opt for a secondary service to help. And going that route might save you a few bucks (just wait until you see the price of Identity Guard’s Value Plan – it’s insanely inexpensive).
But doing all of that yourself takes time and energy that most of us don’t have. And, using a secondary service makes things complicated – now you’re having to log in multiple places, learn how to use a second interface, and so forth.
That’s why it’s much nicer to have one service that monitors everything (and is typically more than worth paying extra for).
I point this out so that you’ll better understand why Aura wins this head-to-head comparison. In part, it’s because it offers all the monitoring services you could possibly need to protect yourself, your assets, and your family in one place.
Threat Resolution: Winner – Aura
Of course, solid monitoring services aren’t the only reason Aura wins this battle.
Aura and Identity Guard use the same customer service and threat resolution team – and they are excellent. I’ll detail my experiences with both of them below, but the sum-up is this:
While both services offer excellent threat resolution, only Aura offers it as a standard. Identity Guard’s low and mid-tier plans don’t include full-service threat resolution.
That’s why Aura takes the gold here again. Not because Identity Guard is bad in this area, but because they simply don’t offer it with all of their plans.
Since they use the same customer service team, it’s no surprise that my experiences in calling Aura and Identity Guard were similar.
When I called Aura’s customer support on a Sunday morning, I reached a representative in just under one minute. She was friendly, helpful, and obviously knowledgeable about Aura’s services
With Identity Guard, I had to wait until Monday. Though Identity Guard relies on the same service team, their phone line is only open Monday – Saturday as follows:
Those are pretty generous hours, so I can’t fault Identity Guard too much, but next to Aura’s 24/7/365 availability, they don’t look great.
In any case, Identity Guard was experiencing unusually high phone traffic when I called Monday morning. So, after about a minute and a half on hold, they offered to call me back, which I appreciated.
Once I connected with them, I found their representatives to be just as helpful and compassionate as Aura (which is no surprise). They understand their product and are clearly willing to go above and beyond to help a customer.
Identity Restoration Services
When an identity protection company offers great customer service, it usually means that its identity restoration services will also be top-notch.
That’s certainly the case with Aura and Identity Guard. Both services offer white-glove identity restoration. That means they’ll do all the work you don’t want to do. They’ll file paperwork, make necessary phone calls, and come up with a plan to restore your identity to pre-theft status.
Here’s the catch.
Aura offers white-glove identity restoration standard, Identity Guard does not.
In fact, Identity Guard only offers it with its Ultra plan, making it one of the few identity protection services to feature plans that don’t include identity restoration. That doesn’t mean their customer service team won’t be able to give you advice on how to handle a threat, but it does mean you have to do all the work to resolve it yourself.
Lost Wallet Protection
Identity Guard and Aura both offer lost wallet protection with all of their plans. This is a handy service to have and one you should look for in any identity protection service you’re considering.
Because we’ve all experienced that panicky feeling when our wallet isn’t where it should be. Whether it’s lost or stolen, having a service that will help you cancel and replace everything inside it (except cash) really helps lower your stress level.
In this area, Identity Guard stands out a bit. They include an emergency funds wire. So, let’s say your wallet goes missing while you’re traveling, and you need cash fast – Identity Guard will wire you up to $2,000 in emergency funds from one of your other accounts.
Family Plans: Winner – Aura
There are a couple of things to look for when you’re researching family plans. The first is flexibility.
Most services offer a family plan that works for two adults and a set amount of children under 18. This setup is relatively rigid and doesn’t allow for families with college-aged kids, elderly parents, or others they want to protect.
Aura and Identity Guard do better by offering plans that allow for up to five adults and unlimited children. So you can protect everyone you need to.
But, aside from that, Identity Guard doesn’t offer much for families in terms of unique features – but Aura does.
Aura includes a family storage vault that allows you to securely share passwords and files among family members. It also comes with family alerts, which allow one person to monitor identity threat alerts for the entire family. And, it provides child three-bureau credit freezes and sex offender geo alerts.
On top of these features, Aura offers two additional tools for families with young children: parental controls and safe gaming.
Parental Control Features
Aura offers full parental controls with its family plans. These allow parents to:
If you have young children at home, these tools are crucial. They’ll help you give peace of mind while your kids are online.
Safe Gaming and Anti-bullying Monitoring
Multiplayer games are popular, but they come with risks – risks that parents haven’t been able effectively to mitigate…until now.
Aura’s safe gaming tool uses AI and machine learning to monitor player interactions on over 200 games. It watches for signs of bullying, harassment, grooming, and other predatory behavior, then alerts parents if it finds anything.
With safe gaming in place, you can let your children enjoy popular online games without worry. If they encounter a predator or cyberbully, you’ll know about it and be able to act.
Theft Insurance: Winner – Aura
Aura and Identity Guard’s theft insurance policies are very similar in terms of what they cover and what limits they put into place. But, there’s one huge difference to be aware of.
See, both services offer policies with $1 million in aggregate coverage. Both also place limits on things like lost wages, elderly and childcare, and travel expenses.
Aura identity theft insurance offers $1 million PER ADULT. Identity Guard only offers $1 million per plan.
That means you can get up to $5 million in identity theft insurance coverage for stolen funds, expenses, and legal fees with Aura – making it the clear winner for this category.
Ease of Use: Winner – Tie
I can sum this category up quickly – Identity Guard and Aura are easy to use, but I like other interfaces better.
Identity Guard and Aura offer interfaces that look very similar, and there’s nothing bad about them.
This is what Identity Guard’s dashboard and alerts look like:
And here are the same areas within Aura:
Aside from a different color palette, there are not a lot of differences. They’re obviously from the same company.
Aura offers alerts on the main dashboard and puts its additional features on a separate page, which is ideal. While Identity Guard does the opposite – forcing you to navigate to the alerts from a main screen that lists their services. But otherwise, the differences are mostly aesthetic.
So, in this category, the services tie.
And as I said, neither one is bad. But I also think both could be better.
Compared to the streamlined and organized interfaces that services like LifeLock provide, Aura and Identity Guard are definitely second place (not that I’d recommend LifeLock, by the way…its interface is just about all it has going for it).
It takes a minute to figure out how to navigate through these services, and I think you could organize them a little better.
I like the dashboard to show a summary of each service aspect, and then I want the navigational menu to match what the dashboard shows. That way, I can use the dashboard to get a snapshot. Then I can use the menu to easily navigate into each section for more information.
Aura’s dashboard does give somewhat of a snapshot, offering alerts, your credit score, and a transaction summary, but its top-line navigational menu doesn’t match what the dashboard shows, which makes things feel clunky.
Identity Guard’s top-line navigational menu is better, but its dashboard doesn’t give basic information.
See? Both services could improve, but neither is difficult to use as is.
Online Privacy Features: Winner – Aura
I like an identity protection service to provide all the digital security extras – VPNs, antivirus software, password managers, and so forth. That way, I know my family is safe on the web, whether they’re online banking, scrolling social media, or online shopping.
Yes, you can purchase these from other companies, but I prefer all my Internet security to come from the same place. If you’re with me on that, Aura is the better choice.
With Aura, you get:
Identity Guard only includes a password manager and safe browser – making this an easy category to call!
Cost: Winner – Aura
If you’re looking at Aura and Identity Guard’s price charts side-by-side, you might think I’m crazy. Identity Guard is obviously the less expensive option. But when I’m evaluating a service’s price point, I’m not just looking at dollar amounts. I’m looking at value.
So yes, Identity Guard’s plans start at a very low rate. But if you scan back through this review, you’ll notice those low-end plans also include very little. You have to purchase Identity Guard’s top-tier plan to get necessities like home title monitoring, credit monitoring, and identity restoration.
At the top tier, Identity Guard no longer looks very budget-friendly. For just a few dollars more per month, you can get Aura – and Aura includes a lot more.
Aura also offers a discount code to Family Security Matters readers. That means you can get Aura for less than Identity Guard’s Ultra Plan.
And signing up is risk-free – the discount code works with Aura’s 14-day free trial. Plus, Aura has a 60-day money-back guarantee. If the service doesn’t work for you, a quick call to customer support, and you’ll get a full refund.
After looking closely at the two products, Aura really stands above Identity Guard in just about every important category. It really gives the best protection for a lower price. Our single complaint with Aura is that the user interface and website dashboard is clunky and not well thought out. If you can get over that, it really is the best value.
When it comes to Aura vs Identity Guard, you really cannot go wrong with either product. Your choice will simply boil down to the features that you need and think are most important, and the price you are willing to pay for identity theft protection.
Other Articles You Might Like:
- Identity Guard vs Complete ID: Comprehensive Review
- IdentityForce vs. Identity Guard: Which Is Better?
- Identity Guard or IDShield? Which is Right for You?
- Identity Guard vs LifeLock: Which is the best for you?
- Aura vs IdentityForce: Which One Actually Wins?
- Aura vs Complete ID: A Comprehensive Comparison
- Aura vs. LifeLock: Which One Wins?