LifeLock vs. Experian IdentityWorks

Last Updated on August 16, 2023

LifeLock wins this battle. Weeks of testing revealed that it’s better than Experian IdentityWorks in almost every way. 

But, as you’re about to see, I’m still not a LifeLock fan. There are major issues with its services, and I wouldn’t trust it to protect my family. That’s why I recommend Aura instead. 

Aura offers award-winning identity theft and credit monitoring, 24/7 access to U.S.-based threat resolution experts, insurance that increases with each adult you add to your plan (you can add up to five!), and a whole host of tools that keep your family safe online. 

Why You Should Get Aura:

  • You want the best in threat monitoring and alerts.
  • $5 million theft insurance for your (even extended) family appeals to you. (Get Aura’s family plan.)
  • 24/7/365 US-based customer care is important to you
  • You want to get the most identity theft protection value for what you pay for.

That said, LifeLock and Experian are big names in the identity protection world, and I get it if you’re curious about them.

This LifeLock vs. Experian IdentityWorks review will give you a close-up examination of each service – from their monitoring capabilities to their plan packages, I cover it all. By the time we’re through, you’ll be equipped with all you need to choose the best identity protection for your family.

LifeLock vs. Experian: Head-to-Head Comparison

Aura
LifeLock
Experian
Monitoring
Comprehensive and highly accurate – found nine unique dark web alerts and 15 password alerts!
Comprehensive but less accurate – only found eight unique dark web alerts and seven password alerts.
Found nine (unique) dark web alerts
Threat Resolution
24/7/365 U.S.-based customer service that’s easy to get in touch with.
24/7/365 customer service LifeLock claims are U.S.-based, but aren’t.
U.S.-based customer service and threat resolution, limited hours
Family Plans
Flexible family plans allowing up to five adults and unlimited children with comprehensive parental controls.
Family plans that include two adults and up to five children with glitchy parental controls.
Two adults and up to ten children under 18; no parental controls
Theft Insurance
$1 million in theft insurance coverage per adult with ALL plans – that’s $5 million total.
$1 million total in theft insurance with their top-tier plan only. Lower plans have $25,000 and $100,000 in coverage, respectively.
$1 million in coverage total
Ease of Use
A little cluttered and clunky, but usable.
Streamlined, clean, and easy to use.
Organized but features annoying upsells
Online Safety Features
Decent VPN and antivirus software. Also includes data broker removal and smart vault for family file and password sharing.
Top-notch VPN and antivirus software from Norton.
Monthly privacy scan
Cost
Very affordable (especially when you use our discount code) and never changes.
Seems affordable, but price increases significantly with subscription renewal.
Overpriced given offerings

Monitoring: Winner – LifeLock

LifeLock comes out ahead for monitoring capabilities, but not by as much as I expected. 

Monitoring capabilities are one of the most important components of a good service because it allows you to take a proactive approach to identity protection, and many services fail to provide effective monitoring. 

For a service to be effective, it needs to offer:

Accuracy (Did the service find the information I expect it to?)
Comprehensiveness (Is the service looking in the right places?) 
Timeliness (How long does it take to populate alerts?)
Actionability (Do the alerts help me protect myself and my family?) 

Do Experian and LifeLock offer all of the above? LifeLock certainly should, given its popularity, but take a look…

Identity

LifeLock and Experian both offer the following identity monitoring services: 

Dark web monitoring
Change of address monitoring
SSN monitoring
Sex offender registry monitoring
Court record monitoring
Non-credit loan/ pay day loan alerts

Experian’s identity monitoring services end there…but LifeLock has more to offer, including: 

Home title monitoring
Data breach notifications
Phone takeover monitoring 

So, when it comes to comprehensiveness, LifeLock is the clear winner

But comprehensiveness only tells us so much. If the service isn’t also accurate and timely, even the widest breadth of monitoring tools won’t do any good. 

Both services populated alerts quickly, in under five minutes. So, timeliness isn’t an issue, but accuracy is

During testing, LifeLock uncovered eight unique dark web alerts. Experian IdentityWorks found more alerts (13, to be exact). So, you’d think Experian would come out on top…

But it doesn’t because it’s alerts weren’t unique and aren’t actionable

Many of Experian’s alerts gave little to no information- just that an email or phone number related to me was leaked on a certain date. And many of the alerts were identical – the same date, same phone number leaked.  

experian alerts fishy date

Repetitive alerts make it look like IdentityWorks is doing its job, but they’re essentially useless. They don’t help you protect yourself.  

LifeLock’s alerts were more useful, even though there were fewer. They gave me the information I needed to take action and suggested what that action should be. Take a look: 

lifelock dark web alert

And when you scroll down, you’ll see: 

lifelock alert next steps

LifeLock helps you be proactive with your identity protection, which is a lot more valuable than a lengthy list of unusable alerts. 

Credit and Financial

When it comes to credit and financial monitoring, you might imagine that Experian IdentityWorks would excel, and it does. But LifeLock offers a lot of services in this area too. 

Experian and LifeLock both include:

Three-bureau credit monitoring
In-portal credit locks (TransUnion with LifeLock) 
Credit reports and scores 

The frequency of the reports and score varies with each service – Experian offers a daily FICO score and quarterly three-bureau updates, while LifeLock offers daily one-bureau (Equifax) scores and quarterly updates. 

Monthly vs. quarterly three-bureau score updates aren’t that big of a difference. But, there’s a stark contrast in the rest of the credit and financial services that LifeLock and Experian include. 

LifeLock focuses more on financial tools. They include 401(k) and investment account monitoring, bank account activity alerts, bank takeover alerts, and account application alerts. 

As far as monitoring tools go, these are very useful because they allow you to look at all your online banking activity in one place. If you and your family use multiple banks, that’s going to save you a ton of time. 

As you might have guessed, Experian’s tools focus more on credit. They include a FICO score tracker and Experian Boost. If you’re about to make a big purchase or are trying to repair your credit, these tools are excellent – but they’re also available for free

So, you don’t have to purchase an IdentityWorks plan to use Experian’s credit-building tools. You could sign up for them alongside another (more useful) identity protection service – just saying

Threat Resolution: Winner – Experian

It’s really not hard to beat LifeLock when it comes to threat resolution. I’ll go into detail on that below, but just know while Experian’s threat resolution capabilities are adequate, they’re far from impressive. 

If you want the peace of mind that comes with professional threat resolution – I’m talking full, white-glove service, where someone else answers all your questions, makes phone calls on your behalf, fills out paperwork, and literally walks you through the process – I wouldn’t go with either of these services. 

Aura is much better. With a 24/7/365, easy-to-reach, U.S.-based threat resolution team, Aura excels at this. 

LifeLock and Experian both have issues in this area that make me wary about using their services. 

Customer Service

You can learn a lot about a company’s threat resolution capabilities simply by calling their customer service line. 

Think about it. 

If you get a concerning alert, the customer service line is probably what you’ll call first. In some cases, they double as threat resolution specialists. In others, they’ll connect you to a separate expert. But either way, they’re the first person you’ll speak to. 

Experian’s Customer Support 

Calling IdentityWorks wasn’t a bad experience, but it wasn’t great. There’s a pretty intricate (and annoying) automated phone tree to climb through before you reach a live human being, but in my experience, once you reach someone, they’re friendly and helpful. 

When I called on a Tuesday at 5 pm, I reached a representative after four minutes. That’s not as impressive as other services, but it’s not terrible. 

What’s more concerning with Experian is its limited customer service hours. They don’t advertise this, but when you read through their service agreement, it clearly states hours are 6 am- 6 pm (PST), Monday through Friday, and 8 am – 5 pm on weekends. 

The agreement also shows that customer support is run by a third-party, U.S.-based service. They cannot answer any sort of identity threat question and will have to redirect you to a specialist if you call regarding an alert. 

I don’t love third-party support services, but most of the bigger identity protection companies use them. At least Experian is based in the U.S. 

I can’t say the same for LifeLock…

LifeLock’s Customer Support 

LifeLock doesn’t want you to call customer support. They do everything they can to answer your question via chat or their self-help articles. 

It literally takes clicking through four different support pages before they’ll give you a phone number to call. You even have to fill out a form with your name, question, and account information. 

lifelock support

Once you do all of that, you can expect to sit on hold for at least five minutes before you’re connected to an overseas customer service rep. 

LifeLock is a little deceptive about this. They advertise U.S.- based threat resolution assistance, and technically that’s true. Only the customer service team is overseas…but you typically have to call them in order to reach the U.S.-based threat resolution team. 

So, if you need assistance with identity restoration, there’s no way of avoiding the very frustrating call to LifeLock’s customer support team. 

Identity Restoration Services

Both LifeLock and Experian advertise identity restoration services. 

Experian explains that this means you’ll be connected to a dedicated threat resolution expert who will walk you through the process of restoring your identity. 

LifeLock promises dedicated assistance as well, but their hours in this area are limited. The U.S.-based team is only available from 10 am – 7 pm. 

Lost Wallet Protection

Both LifeLock and Experian also offer lost wallet protection. So, if your wallet is stolen or lost, you can call their helplines. Their experts will help you cancel and replace your wallet’s contents. 

I would hate to go through this process with LifeLock, to be honest. Calling their support team gives me anxiety, and I wouldn’t want to add stress to an already stressful situation! 

That said, LifeLock will go as far as to reimburse you for the cost of your wallet or bag, so if you’re a fan of high-priced accessories, this might be a nice feature. 

Family Plans: Winner – LifeLock 

LifeLock comes out ahead here because it offers parental controls that are very useful for parents with younger children. But, if you don’t have young children to protect on the Internet, Experian’s family plan offers plenty of identity services. 

With Experian, family coverage includes: 

Two adults
Up to ten children 

With LifeLock, family coverage includes: 

Two adults
Up to five children

So, if you have more than five kids, you’ll want to avoid LifeLock. And, if you have children over 18, aging parents, or any adult family member (beyond your spouse) that you want to cover, neither of these services will work

In that scenario, I’d definitely look at Aura. They allow you to cover up to five adults and unlimited children on any family plan. They also increase their insurance coverage with each adult you add (up to $5 million total). 

Aura’s features for parents with younger children are better than LifeLock’s and Experian’s too, but we’ll get to that…

Parental Control Features

As I mentioned, LifeLock’s parental control features are why they win this category. With LifeLock, you can include Norton Family. 

Norton family offers parents the ability to: 

Block and filter websites
Set screen time limits
Create remote learning periods (Gives access to certain sites for specific times) 
Track internet usage 

Experian doesn’t include any sort of parental controls. Its service is much more straightforward and doesn’t include digital security extras. 

All of that said, though, if you want parental controls, Norton family isn’t the best available. Aura’s is much better. 

With Aura, you get all of the basics, like the ability to block sites, set screen time limits, and track internet usage, alongside more advanced features, like the ability to pause the internet

If you’ve ever had to rip a tablet out of a seven-year-old’s hands, you’ll understand how fantastic an internet pause button is. You can get your family’s attention back in a matter of seconds – imagine that!  

Safe Gaming and Anti-bullying Monitoring

Neither LifeLock nor Experian offer safe gaming or anti-bullying monitoring for children. These are services that parents of school-aged kids should look into, though. 

Bullying, especially through multiplayer games, is disturbingly common. And it’s extremely difficult for parents to monitor player interactions, which leaves kids vulnerable. Many kids self-report being victims of bullying, harassment, grooming, and doxing during online games. 

If your children participate in games like these, you’ll want a protection service that offers safe gaming tools like Aura. 

With an Aura family plan, you get tools that monitor voice and text interactions for signs of cyberbullying, harassment, and targeting on hundreds of online games, so you can keep your family safe. 

Theft Insurance: Winner – LifeLock

A $1 million theft insurance plan is standard with identity protection services, and it’s what Experian includes. There are a few limits on specific areas of coverage (as shown below), but that’s all very normal. 

experian insurance

LifeLock wins this category because they offer more insurance overall. They include:

Increasing insurance coverage for each adult 
Insurance for children 
More than $1 million in coverage with its top-tier plan

And that’s the crucial thing to recognize…

LifeLock offers up to $3 million ($1 million each for stolen funds, expenses, and legal fees) per adult and over $1 million per child with its top-tier plan, but lower-tier plans offer far less

At the lowest level, LifeLock’s insurance coverage only gives you $25,000 each for stolen funds and expenses – way lower than the industry standard. So, while LifeLock wins this category, it’s also far from the best choice if you’re looking at anything other than its top-tier option. 

Ease of Use: Winner – LifeLock 

Both Experian and LifeLock offer intuitive interfaces.

Take a look for yourself…

Here’s LifeLock’s: 

lifelock id dash

 And here’s Experian’s:

experian dash

Obviously, Experian puts an emphasis on credit (you have to scroll down to find the identity protection services), but that’s not a dealbreaker for me. 

So why does LifeLock win this category? 

Well, though LifeLock does offer a few upsells for things like data broker removal services, it’s not as obnoxious about them as Experian is. 

Experian will fill your inbox with credit card offers, push auto insurance quotes at every chance, and offer you a personal loan each time you log in. 

Online Privacy Features: Winner – LifeLock

Experian doesn’t include many online privacy features, so this category was easy to call. They offer a monthly privacy scan, but that’s about it. 

Meanwhile, LifeLock offers some of the best, including: 

a VPN
Norton antivirus software (for up to 10 devices)
Ad-tracker blocker
Anonymous browser
Password manager

There’s only one service that beats LifeLock for online privacy tools that families can use, and that’s Aura. With Aura, you get everything LifeLock includes, plus a family storage vault for safe file and password sharing and an email alias tool that helps you minimize the risk of data breaches. 

Cost: Winner – Experian

At first glance, LifeLock’s pricing seems more than reasonableespecially when you’re looking at the lower-tier options. Family protection for as low as $18.99 per month seems pretty fantastic. 

But Experian wins this category for a couple of reasons: 

  1. Experian’s family plan is comparable to LifeLock’s mid or top-tier plans, which run for $30.99 and $40.99, respectively. That puts Experian’s price point in line with LifeLock’s for the first year – which brings me to my next point…
  2. LifeLock increases its price upon renewal. Experian doesn’t. So, ultimately, LifeLock is much more expensive than Experian. 

Now, you could make the argument that LifeLock offers more too, but given LifeLock’s severe service flaws, I’m not sure they can justify their price. 

Really, if you want the best value in family identity protection and credit monitoring, you don’t want either of these services. Using our discount code, you can get Aura, which includes far more for less. 

The Winner Is…LifeLock 

It pains me to hand LifeLock this win because I think the service has a few fatal flaws. Its customer service is awful, it misses threats it should catch, and it throws in a significant price increase when you renew your plan. 

On top of that, LifeLock has a sordid company history. They recently settled an FTC lawsuit and suffered a data breach. So, I can’t recommend them for identity protection. 

But I can’t recommend Experian, either. Experian doesn’t offer the breadth of services that families need, and it’s constantly trying to offer you new credit cards, auto insurance quotes, and other annoying upsells. 

If you’re looking for comprehensive identity protection with a full suite of digital safety tools to protect everyone in your family, I recommend Aura. It’s the best in identity theft protection – but you don’t have to take my word for it

So, give Aura a try first. My guess is you won’t be disappointed, but if you are, you can cancel risk-free. That’s more than IdentityWorks, or LifeLock is offering!


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