Last Updated on June 6, 2023
I spent hours evaluating Identity Guard vs LifeLock, attempting to determine which one is best at protecting families, and ultimately LifeLock won. However, I have to be honest, I don’t like LIfeLock.
For my family, I choose Aura.
As a parent, Aura provides peace of mind in a way no other service I’ve tested can – literally protecting children from both identity theft and internet dangers.
- Looking for the best credit monitoring, identity theft protection, and fraud alerts.
- Looking for a personalized security score to help them understand their financial security.
- Want to access your credit score from Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion – for free.
- Want to dispute errors on your credit report directly from the app.
- You are looking for basic identity theft protection.
- You prefer to pick and choose the extra features that fit your needs best.
- You only need $1 million in identity theft protection.
LifeLock wins this match-up because it offers great insurance coverage that increases with each adult and child. It also offers top-notch parental controls and phenomenal online privacy features.
But these are things that Aura offers too.
Aura is Identity Guard’s successor, and it gets rid of all of its shortcomings. While Identity Guard provides limited customer service hours, mediocre identity theft insurance, and no parental controls, Aura provides 24/7/365 customer service, offers $1 million per adult in identity theft insurance, and comes with amazing parental control features.
At the same time, Aura retains everything that was great about Identity Guard – namely that it’s fantastic at catching threats.
Plus, Aura is less expensive than both LifeLock and Identity Guard when you use our discount code.
So, Aura is my top pick for family protection. But, if you’re still interested in LifeLock or Identity Guard, read on. I’ll explain everything they have (and don’t have) to offer for you and yours.
Identity Guard vs. LifeLock: Head-to-Head Comparison
Award-winning identity theft and credit monitoring that’s both comprehensive and accurate.
Same identity theft and credit monitoring capabilities as Aura, minus auto title monitoring.
Comprehensive but less accurate than Aura.
24/7/365 U.S.-based customer service that’s easy to get in touch with.
U.S.-based customer service with limited hours; M-F 8 a.m. -11 p.m., and Sat. 9 a.m- 6 p.m., EST.
24/7/365 customer service LifeLock claims are U.S.-based but aren’t.
Flexible family plans allow up to five adults and unlimited children with comprehensive parental controls.
Same family plan as Aura; allows up to five adults, but no parental controls
Family plans include two adults and up to five children with glitchy parental controls.
$1 million in theft insurance coverage per adult with ALL plans. And, $5 million coverage for a family of five.
$1 million TOTAL with all plans.
$1 million in theft insurance with their top-tier plan only. Lower plans have $25,000 and $100,000 in coverage, respectively, but insurance increases with each adult.
Ease of Use
A little cluttered and clunky, but usable.
Easy to navigate and use.
Streamlined, clean, and easy to use.
Online Safety Features
Decent VPN and antivirus software. Also, includes data broker removal and smart vault for family file and password sharing.
Safe browser and password manager only.
Top-notch VPN and antivirus software from Norton.
Very affordable (especially when you use our discount code).
Very affordable Value plan if you want basic protections. Higher plan tiers get a little pricey.
Seems affordable, but price increases significantly after first year.
LifeLock vs Identity Guard – How Do the Ratings Work?
Each option is rated based on a simple scale from Poor to Excellent in each category. These scores determine the final score of each product, so you get an easy to understand metric of how good the service is and whether it’s worth picking up.
These ratings fall into a few distinct categories:
Value: how much the service gets you compared to its cost.
Ease of Use: how streamlined the process of using the service is.
Monitoring: how well the monitoring tools work.
Customer Service: the competence and reliability of the customer service team, as well as the available hours.
Insurance: how comprehensive the insurance plan is, if any.
Monitoring: Winner – Identity Guard
It doesn’t surprise me that Identity Guard wins this category. As Aura’s predecessor, it uses the same monitoring technology to scan the web – And, Aura is by far the best I’ve tested in this area.
LifeLock, however, is a bit of a disappointment. Given its price and big marketing claims, I would hope that LifeLock could keep pace (if not outshine) Aura, but it doesn’t.
That’s a problem because thorough monitoring is crucial to protecting your identity, as well as keeping your family safe.
Fast and accurate monitoring services can help you identify potential problems before things get bad. They can alert you to compromised passwords and usernames, allowing you to make simple changes that block thieves.
They can also alert you to bigger issues – like if your child’s Social Security number shows up on the dark web. Though that would be a terrifying alert to receive, knowledge is power. With that information in hand, you can take proactive and protective steps, like locking your child’s credit.
As you’re about to see, LifeLock’s monitoring capabilities are just as comprehensive as Identity Guard, but their issues with accuracy are a major problem.
Both LifeLock and Identity Guard offer all of the following identity monitoring services:
Identity Guard goes one step further by offering social media monitoring with insight reports that analyze your social media habits. Though LifeLock doesn’t include any social media monitoring, it does come with file-sharing network monitoring, which monitors services like DropBox.
So, in terms of the breadth of monitoring services, Identity Guard and LifeLock are about even. It’s worth noting here that Aura offers everything these services include, plus auto title monitoring, so for the most comprehensive services, you want Aura.
When I put Identity Guard and LifeLock to the test, however, issues with LifeLock became apparent.
Here’s what I mean –
Over several weeks of testing, Identity Guard found nine unique dark web alerts, while LifeLock only found eight. That means LifeLock isn’t finding everything it should.
If we look at more than just the dark web, the problem becomes even more obvious. Identity Guard found 17 identity threats in its initial scan – LifeLock only found seven.
This is why Identity Guard wins in this area. It’s simply a more accurate service and with monitoring, accuracy counts for a lot.
Credit and Financial
It’s clear LifeLock struggles to find and alert users to potential threats.
Fortunately for them, though, things start to look a little better when we look at LifeLock’s breadth of financial and credit monitoring tools.
LifeLock and Identity Guard both include:
From a financial perspective, this is a thorough list. Many services fail to include things like investment account monitoring. That both of these services do is a huge PLUS.
Where Identity Guard and LifeLock differ is in their credit tools.
LifeLock offers daily updates on your credit report and score from Equifax. It also includes three-bureau monthly reports with its top-tier plan.
On top of that, LifeLock has an “Identity Lock” feature that allows you to lock your TransUnion credit with one click. You can also issue a payday loan lock using this service.
If that wasn’t enough, LifeLock also helps you with freezing your credit at the other two credit bureaus, Equifax and Experian.
Identity Guard’s credit features aren’t quite as stellar. Like LifeLock, they offer a credit lock feature (through Experian rather than Equifax) which is fantastic, and they offer three-bureau monitoring.
However, Identity Guard only offers a monthly credit score and one annual three-bureau report with their top-tier plan. And Identity Guard’s credit tools are a bit more difficult to navigate.
LifeLock’s daily updates are a bit more thorough, and I like the way they lay their tools out. Still, credit tools aren’t the most important part of an identity protection’s monitoring services – accuracy is. This means Identity Guard still wins this category.
Threat Resolution: Winner – Identity Guard
Identity protection services can’t guarantee your information won’t end up in the wrong hands. Though comprehensive monitoring services can alert you to issues early, sometimes identity theft still occurs.
If the worst happens to you or a family member, it’s crucial to know your identity protection service will have your back with a team of top-notch threat resolution experts.
When I put LifeLock and Identity Guard side-by-side in this category, on paper, LifeLock won. But, in practice, I couldn’t give it to them. The experience with their customer service team was just too bad.
Identity Guard uses the same customer service team that Aura uses, and they’re fantastic. When I called, they were unusually busy. After about a minute of waiting, they asked if they could call me back. That way, I wasn’t stuck waiting on hold.
I appreciated their consideration for my time and that they kept their word. It wasn’t long before I was talking to a knowledgeable and friendly representative.
My only issue with Identity Guard in this area is their lack of customer service hours. They’re only open Monday – Friday from 8 a.m. – 11 p.m., EST and Saturday from 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. The best identity protection services, like Aura, have 24/7/365 customer service.
LifeLock’s customer service team is technically 24/7/365, but reaching out to them isn’t very pleasant. Calling LifeLock is a bit like going to the dentist – sometimes you have to do it, but only an insane person looks forward to it.
First, getting through to their customer service team isn’t exactly easy. LifeLock makes you jump through a few hoops.
As shown above, they have you walk through several steps before giving you a number to call, and at each step in the process, they push an “expert answer.”
I get that they have a lot of users and need to keep call center volume down, but therein lies the disadvantage of using such a big service – getting help isn’t easy, and it probably won’t be tailored to your needs.
When I called, I was on hold for just over three minutes. That’s not so bad (though the best services answer in about a minute or offer to call you back). But then, I was connected to a person who couldn’t really answer my questions. Everything they said sounded scripted and they weren’t very knowledgeable about product features.
LifeLock also offers a live chat. Sadly, the answers from service reps through their chat features were even less helpful.
So, even with limited hours, Identity Guard comes out ahead here. Their team is knowledgeable, compassionate, and easy to reach. I can’t say the same for LifeLock.
Identity Restoration Services
If it weren’t for my experiences with LifeLock’s customer service, they would probably win this category because at least LifeLock offers identity restoration with all of their plans. Identity Guard only includes it with their top-tier.
However, I know Identity Guard’s restoration service offerings are exceptional. Their restoration specialists are industry experts with an average of seven years of experience, and they’ll walk you through the process of restoring your identity step-by-step – from helping you file credit disputes to arranging phone calls with your bank.
I have less faith in LifeLock’s restoration team, given my experience with their customer service. I wouldn’t want to call them when I’m already in a stressful situation.
Of course, you can get 24/7 access to Identity Guard’s restoration team at a better price by opting for Aura instead. So really, that’s the best option.
Lost Wallet Protection
Both Identity Guard and LifeLock offer lost wallet protection, and each comes with a perk.
Normally services that offer this feature simply mean that they will help you cancel and replace your bank cards, ID, and insurance information, but LifeLock and Identity Guard both go a step further.
LifeLock offers up to $500 in cash reimbursement if you lose your wallet. I’ve only seen one other service offer this (Allstate Identity Protection). Interestingly, LifeLock doesn’t advertise this very well. I wouldn’t know about it if I didn’t read the insurance policy.
Identity Guard doesn’t include cash reimbursement, but they will wire you up to $2,000 in emergency funds from another one of your accounts. That could really come in handy if your wallet is stolen while you’re traveling!
Family Plans: Winner – LifeLock
Both LifeLock and Identity Guard offer great family plans, and for some families, Identity Guard’s plans are the best choice. Looking at this category for most, though, I have to give it to LifeLock.
LifeLock’s family plans include up to two adults and five children. That’s a pretty rigid definition of family, but it’s also a common arrangement.
Identity Guard’s family plans offer a lot more flexibility, allowing you to include up to five adults and unlimited children. If you have adult kids, parents, or in-laws that you want to protect, this is a fantastic feature.
But, Identity Guard’s family services end there. They don’t offer a parental control suite or safe gaming options, whereas LifeLock comes with Norton Family.
Identity Guard probably doesn’t offer the extra features because Identity Guard’s successor, Aura, offers them instead.
Not only does Aura have the flexibility, allowing up to five adults and unlimited children with their plans, but it also offers a full suite of parental controls that surpass LifeLock’s offerings.
So, in my analysis of their family features below, I’ll cover everything LifeLock includes, but I’ll compare it to Aura rather than Identity Guard. Because if you have minor children that you need to protect, the battle isn’t between LifeLock and Identity Guard – it’s between Aura and LifeLock instead.
Parental Control Features
As I said, LifeLock comes with Norton Family. Norton Family is a comprehensive parental control suite that gives parents the ability to monitor screen time, block websites, and control remote learning across devices.
It’s a great app overall, though there may be some issues with it. The Google Play store is filled with negative reviews from Android users that have experienced detrimental glitches, but it seems to work well with iOS.
If you want the best in parental controls, though, Aura is better. With Aura family plans, you get Circle parental controls.
Circle is an award-winning app that gives parents the ability to filter websites and content, set screen time limits, and pause the internet with one click. So, if you need to take the screens away, you can do so instantly. You’ll also be able to see what your kids are looking at online and review how long they spend on the internet with Circle’s usage report.
Safe Gaming and Anti-bullying Monitoring
Here’s where Aura really stands out. Aura is the only identity protection service I’ve come across that offers safe gaming and anti-bullying monitoring.
With Aura family plans, you have access to ProtectMe by Kidas. This award-winning app uses machine learning and AI to analyze voice and text interactions your kids have on online games. It looks for bullying, racism, harassment, and grooming tactics – allowing parents to put an end to relationships that could be harmful.
LIfelock (and Identity Guard) fail to offer anything like this, and it’s a huge benefit to parents of younger children and teens. If that’s you, I highly recommend checking out Aura rather than LifeLock or Identity Guard.
Theft Insurance: Winner – LifeLock
This was a tough category to judge. Both LifeLock and Identity Guard offer $1 million dollar theft insurance policies.
However, LifeLock only offers $1 million for stolen funds and expenses with their top-tier plan. Lower plan levels offer $25,000 and $100,000, respectively. Annoyingly, LIfelock advertises a “$1 million protection package” with each tier – but that’s only for legal fees. Expenses and fund reimbursement are limited to the aforementioned amounts.
That said, LifeLock takes this category by offering increasing coverage with each person you add to their plan.
With their top-tier plan, you get $3,000,000 in coverage per adult ($1 million each for stolen funds, expenses, and legal fees). You also get $1,050,000 per child ($25,000 for stolen funds and expenses and $1 million for legal fees).
Identity Guard offers $1 million total, regardless of the number of adults on your plan, which isn’t great. Notably, though, Identity Guard’s successor, Aura, offers insurance that increases with every adult you add to the plan, up to $5 million.
Ease of Use: Winner – LifeLock
Both LifeLock and Identity Guard are relatively easy to use.
LIfelock has a nice layout and is easy to navigate. It also comes with a useful app that shows you alerts, lets you set parental controls, and more, on the go.
Identity Guard has a good layout too and I like the information it provides on the home screen. You can see alerts, credit score information, and other useful tidbits in one glance.
Identity Guard also includes an app, but that’s where it loses this category. The app only gives access to alerts and your account information. You can’t view credit information or other tools, making it less useful.
Online Privacy Features: Winner – LifeLock
Online privacy features aren’t the most important part of an identity protection service, but they are nice to have. When you’re trying to protect your entire family online, it’s super convenient to have privacy extras that come from one place.
For this, LifeLock is superior to every other service I’ve tested.
See, LifeLock comes with Norton Antivirus software and a very good VPN. It also includes an ad-tracker, safe browser, password manager for adults, and a privacy monitor.
Identity Guard includes a safe browser and password manager, and that’s it.
Again, I don’t think you should weigh online privacy features too heavily when judging a service, but if you were going to, LifeLock would be the best option available.
Cost: Winner – Identity Guard
From a cost standpoint, Identity Guard is a great choice. Their value plan is an amazing deal if you’re okay with very basic coverage.
But if you want thorough protection, you’ll need at least the Ultra plan, which isn’t as affordable for families.
Still, it’s better than LifeLock’s pricing structure. LifeLock starts out with attractive pricing, but they pull a bait and switch.
After the first year, your LifeLock subscription will increase A LOT. Their top-tier family plan starts at $48.99 per month (when paid monthly) and renews at $81.99 per month! There’s a slight discount for paying annually, but it’s still pricey.
If you want the best value in identity protection, I suggest Aura.
With our discount code, you get everything in Identity Guard’s top-tier plan and then some.
That means you get more effective monitoring and better threat resolution services than LifeLock. Plus, you’ll get the extras that LifeLock offers, but Identity Guard doesn’t, like parental controls and online privacy features. And you’ll get it all at a better price that’s locked in for life.
LifeLock vs Identity Guard Overall Winner: Norton LifeLock
Begrudgingly, I have to give this one to LifeLock. But it’s not because I think LIfelock is a good choice.
Identity Guard has more effective monitoring and a much more knowledgeable customer service team. LifeLock only wins because they offer more insurance coverage and several more useful features for parents.
BUT, Aura is the real winner here.
Aura makes up for what Identity Guard lacks by providing better insurance coverage and offering parents tons of tools that help them keep their kids safe. But it retains Identity Guard’s strengths – namely, it offers award-winning identity theft and credit monitoring. So, if you want the best identity protection for your family, that’s where I would look.
Best of all, Aura does all of this at a lower price than LifeLock or Identity Guard. In other words, LifeLock won this battle, but Aura won the war.
Other Articles You Might Like:
- LifeLock Identity Theft Protection Review
- What Are Identity Guard’s Family Plans?
- Identity Guard Review – Is it Worth It?
- Identity Guard vs IdentityForce – An Extensive Comparison
- Identity Guard vs IDShield – Check Comparison
- Using Social Security Number To Crack Your Bank Accounts
- Head-to-Head: Aura and Identity Guard Compared