LifeLock vs. Zander: Which One is Better?

Last Updated on January 8, 2024

Weeks of testing their monitoring tools, threat resolution expertise, and extra security features made it clear that LifeLock is better than Zander.

This might seem obvious given that LifeLock markets itself as an all-inclusive, high-end service (that comes at a high-end price). But you don’t always get what you pay for in identity protection. Just look at Aura – my top choice for protecting your family.

Aura offers award-winning identity theft and credit monitoring, 24/7 U.S.-based customer service, fantastic insurance coverage, and a list of security features so long it’s hard to believe! Yet, Aura is surprisingly affordable (especially when you use our discount code). 

Still Our Best Choice
Choose Aura if you…
  • You want fully comprehensive threat monitoring & timely, accurate alerts.
  • A maximum of $5 million theft insurance on Aura’s family plan for everyone on the plan is something you’d value, as well as a thorough suite of parental controls.
  • White glove concierge 24/7/365 US-based customer care appeals to you.
  • You want an inexpensive service for the most identity theft protection plus additional services (ad blocker, VPN, antivirus, email alias creator, password manager) currently on the market.
Choose LifeLock if you…
  • You don’t mind paying a premium that increases year-on-year for poor monitoring.
  • You like the idea of the maximum of $3 million in theft insurance on their Ultimate Plus plan.
  • You don’t mind sub-par 24/7/365 customer support.
  • You don’t want to spend time and effort monitoring your credit.
Choose Zander if you…
  • You just want the basic categories of identity theft covered and don’t mind checking your own credit.
  • You only need a maximum of $2 million in theft insurance (for a family).
  • You like reliable 24/7/365 customer support.
  • You’re new to identity theft protection and want to try out an entry-level, cheap service.

So, I wouldn’t have been all that surprised if Zander had come out ahead of LifeLock. Zander may be one of the cheapest options, but that doesn’t mean it’s bad. In fact, this review will show that Zander came surprisingly close to winning this match-up.

Want to know why? Keep reading. I’ll explain how these services do (and don’t) protect your name, your assets, and your family.

Zander vs. LifeLock: Head-to-Head Comparison

Aura
LifeLock
Zander
Monitoring
Award-winning identity theft and credit monitoring that’s both comprehensive and accurate.
Comprehensive but less accurate.
Accurate but not comprehensive. Alerts aren’t actionable.
Threat Resolution
24/7/365 U.S.-based customer service that’s easy to get in touch with.
24/7/365 third-party run customer service. Threat resolution team has limited hours.
24/7 U.S.-based customer service and threat resolution team.
Family Plans
Flexible family plans allow up to five adults and unlimited children with comprehensive parental controls.
Family plans include two adults and up to five children. Includes parental controls for PCs only.
Budget-friendly family plans for two adults and up to ten kids. No parental controls.
Theft Insurance Per Adult
$1 million in theft insurance coverage per adult with ALL plans. And, $5 million coverage for a family of five.
$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.
$1 million in theft insurance coverage per adult, up to two adults.
Theft Insurance Per Adult
Easy to use; could be more intuitive.
Streamlined, clean, and easy to use.
Poor user interface.
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.
VPN and antivirus included with top-tier plan.
Cost
Very affordable (especially when you use our discount code).
Seems affordable, but price increases significantly after first year.
Very inexpensive option.

Monitoring: Winner – LifeLock

LifeLock offers extensive monitoring services that are decently accurate. It also provides exceptionally actionable alerts. It’s not the fastest service I’ve tested – it seems to take about twenty-four to forty-eight hours to find everything it should. But it’s not the slowest, either. 

For those reasons, LifeLock comes out ahead of Zander in this category. 

Though Zander is faster and slightly more accurate, its services aren’t nearly as comprehensive, and its alerts don’t provide enough information to act. 

I’ll show you what I mean…

Identity

Zander’s top-tier plan includes the following identity monitoring services: 

Dark web monitoring
Social Security number monitoring
USPS change of address monitoring

Though those are key services, but it’s not a very comprehensive list – especially when you put it next to LifeLock, which offers all of the above, plus:

Home title monitoring
Fictitious identity monitoring
Sex offender registry alerts
Court record alerts

Few services match LifeLock in terms of monitoring breadth. Aura goes beyond by offering home and auto title monitoring, but that’s about it. 

Unfortunately, LifeLock isn’t as accurate as Zander (or Aura). Where LifeLock found eight unique dark web alerts, Zander found nine. 

Here’s the catch: determining which of Zander’s alerts were unique was tricky. That’s because Zander’s alerts don’t give the information they should. 

See for yourself: 

zander alert

This alert shows my email was compromised but doesn’t tell me where the breach occurred. Nor does it hint at what my password was at the time. 

LifeLock’s alerts, on the other hand, are much more detailed

lifelock dark web alert

They show the site that leaked my data, what was leaked, and the date it occurred. Though it’s not shown here, they also offer a longer list of “next steps” to take to keep my identity safe. 

Credit and Financial

LifeLock also offers a wide breadth of credit and financial monitoring services. With its top-tier plan, LifeLock includes: 

401 (k) and investment account monitoring
Checking and savings account application monitoring
Bank takeover alerts
Three-bureau credit monitoring 
In-portal TransUnion credit lock 
Child credit file detection (with family plans)

Zander, on the other hand, only includes: 

Bank account takeover alerts
New account monitoring
In-portal Experian credit lock 

Notice, Zander does not include credit monitoring. This is purposeful and part of their marketing. Per Zander, not including credit monitoring keeps their costs lower than other companies. And, because you can monitor your credit for free yourself, they say it’s unnecessary to include.

Much of Zander’s marketing is centered around fiscal responsibility. Dave Ramsey even endorses them. And they imply that offering credit monitoring services would be fiscally irresponsible. 

While Zander is technically correct about this – you can monitor your credit yourself, doing so takes significant energy and time. Many services don’t charge that much more to include some form of credit monitoring, and the convenience is typically well worth the cost.

Threat Resolution: Winner – Zander

Zander’s threat resolution capabilities are nothing special, but LifeLock’s are way below average. Thus, Zander comes out ahead in this category. 

Customer Service

Both Zander and LifeLock promise 24/7 customer service. So, I called each of them, one after the other, one Friday night at about 9:30 pm PST. Here’s what I found: 

Zander answered the call within one minute. The customer service rep was obviously within the U.S. (which Zander promises), and they were knowledgeable about their product.
LifeLock took three minutes to answer. That was after a lengthy search for their support phone number. Unlike other services that readily publish their customer support team phone number, LifeLock makes you click through page after page of self-help article suggestions before they’ll release the number to you.

And beware, LifeLock’s customer service team is not U.S.-based. They’re a third-party support team based overseas, and their product knowledge is very limited

That means calling LifeLock is often a frustrating experience. Just look up their TrustPilot Reviews if you want more evidence of this. They’re littered with annoyed and sometimes angry customers who’ve had to deal with LifeLock’s customer service. 

Identity Restoration Services

Now, when it comes to identity restoration, LifeLock has a U.S.-based team. However, you can’t contact them unless you’ve been confirmed as an identity theft victimwhich means you may have to call customer service first

LifeLock’s identity restoration team also has limited hours. It’s unclear exactly what those hours are (they’re published differently depending on where you look), but it’s something like 10 am – 7 pm. So, hopefully, you’re not trying to deal with things first thing in the morning. 

And the third strike against LifeLock’s restoration team is this – they use a third-party restoration service. 

Initially, you’ll talk to a LifeLock team member who gathers all your information and documents. But then they hand it over to a third-party service that does the actual work. Putting your personal information in the hands of an undisclosed third party doesn’t seem like the best way to protect your identity. 

Zander’s identity restoration service is 24/7 and U.S.-based, meaning they’re a BIG step ahead of LifeLock. And they don’t use a third-party restoration team to do the heavy lifting. 

Lost Wallet Protection

Credit where credit’s due, though…

LifeLock has a better lost wallet protection policy than most, while Zander’s is merely average. 

Both services will help you cancel and replace your wallet’s contents if it’s lost or stolen. That means they’ll help you with your ID, bank cards, credit cards, and even insurance cards.

But LifeLock goes a step further by including reimbursement for the cost of your wallet or handbag. Certain limitations apply, but if you use a designer wallet or high-end purse, you’ll likely qualify for reimbursement, which is a big plus.

Family Plans: Winner – LifeLock

Neither LifeLock nor Zander offers family plans that impress…

Both only allow for two adults. Zander allows up to ten children, and LifeLock only allows up to five. This is restrictive compared to services like Aura and Identity Guard, which allow up to five adults on a plan – so you can include college-aged children, your parents, etc.
Neither include the family features top services have. While LifeLock offers parental controls, it’s missing things like family alerts, a family storage vault, and safe gaming tools.
Neither include child credit freezes. It’s one of the easiest ways to protect your child’s credit until they’re eighteen, and top services, like Aura, include it with their family plans. 

That said, LifeLock is a step above Zander in this area because it at least includes parental controls. Let’s zoom in on what that means.

Parental Control Features

LifeLock’s top-tier family plan comes with Norton Family. Norton Family is a parental control suite that offers parents the ability to:

Filter and block websites
Set screen time limits
Track internet usage
Create remote learning environments 

These are decent inclusions, but there’s one glaring fault. Norton Family only works on PCs

Now, if you have school-aged kids, they may use PCs for some things, but a lot of their internet browsing is probably happening on their phones. And there, Norton Family doesn’t do any good. 

That’s one of the (many) reasons I like Aura’s parental controls instead. Aura’s family plans come with the Circle app for parental controls. This app works on Android and iPhone, making it a more effective way for parents to monitor their kids online. 

Safe Gaming and Anti-Bullying

Neither Zander nor LifeLock include safe gaming features. This isn’t a surprise. Very few services offer a tool that lets parents monitor their children on multiplayer games, despite their popularity and dangers

Thanks to their anonymity, multiplayer games are paradises for cyber bullies, predators, and others who would do your child harm.

If your children are big on multiplayer games, you should look at Aura. It includes a safe gaming feature that monitors voice and text interactions on multiplayer games so that parents can step in when needed.

Theft Insurance: Winner – LifeLock

This was a difficult category to judge. LifeLock and Zander are unique in this area because both offer increasing insurance with each additional plan member. 

Zander offers $1 million in theft insurance for each adult, up to $2 million. This is better than most identity protection services that offer $1 million total, regardless of the number of adults on your plan. Only a few, Aura included, add coverage for each adult. 

LifeLock goes a bit beyond even that, though, by offering $3 million in coverage total for each adult – $1 million each for stolen funds, expenses, and legal fees. They also include over $1 million for each child. However, this is only available with their top-tier plan

It’s important to understand that LifeLock’s lower-tier plans offer far less coverage (as little as $25,000 for stolen funds and expenses). 

LifeLock is a bit deceptive about this. They advertise all of their plans as featuring a “$1 million protection plan.” That $1 million is only for legal fees, though. 

Still, the substantial coverage with its top tier, and its coverage for kids, means LifeLock wins this area.

Ease of Use: Winner – LifeLock

If you want a intuitive service, LifeLock is the best pick. It has a great user interface. Just look at it:

LifeLock id dashboard

It gives you everything you need right away. Alerts, your credit score, and your transaction summary are all at your fingertips, and the left-side menu makes navigation easy. 

Zander’s interface isn’t the worse I’ve seen, but it’s not great. 

zander dashboard

The alerts are right up front, but the rest of the navigation isn’t as intuitive as LifeLock. And a lot of menu space is given to Zander’s “free quotes.”  These are blatant upsells for Zander’s other services, including their life insurance, auto insurance, and so forth.

Many services offer upsells within their products (including LifeLock), but to give valuable menu space to them is a little much.

Online Privacy Features: Winner – LifeLock

Aura
LifeLock
Zander
Online Safety Features
  • VPN
  • Antivirus
  • Parental Controls
  • Password Manager
  • VPN
  • Norton antivirus
  • Parental controls (with family plan)
  • Password Manager
  • Ad-track blocker
  • Anonymous browser
  • SafeCam (Windows and PC only)
  • VPN
  • Antivirus

Zander is a budget service and doesn’t offer many extras. Its top-tier plan includes antivirus software and a VPN, but that’s it. 

Meanwhile, LifeLock offers several privacy and security features, including: 

Norton Antivirus
VPN
SafeCam for PCs
Privacy monitor
Password manager
Ad-tracker blocker
Annonymous browser

Given its cost, I expect LifeLock to include at least this much with its top-tier plan. To put it into perspective, though, other services provide even more for less

This is another area where Aura really stands out. With the exception of the SafeCam service, Aura includes everything LifeLock does, plus…

A digital family security vault so that you can share files and passwords safely online
Automatic data broker removal 
Email alias

Aura offers all of this at a price that’s lower than LifeLock, which makes LifeLock’s privacy features a little less impressive.

Cost: Winner – Zander

You can get Zander’s budget-friendly family plan for under $13 per month, making it one of the cheapest services I’ve reviewed. 

Plan Type
Annual Billing
Monthly Billing
Essential Plan | Individual
$75.00 /year
$6.75 /month
Elite Cyber Bundle | Individual
$110.00 /year
$9.99 /month
Essential plan | Family
$145.00 /year
$12.90 /month
Elite Cyber Bundle | Family
$215.00 /year
$19.49 /month

Of course, that plan doesn’t include much. It’s really basic identity monitoring and restoration services. Remember, it doesn’t even include credit monitoring, nor does it offer financial monitoring tools. 

Related: See our complete Zander Identity Theft Protection Review

That said, if you need to stay on a strict budget and still want to protect your family in some form, it might be a good option. 

LifeLock sits at the opposite end of the pricing spectrum. Even its lowest-tier plan is fairly expensive, and it doesn’t include much. Its top-tier plan is one of the priciest options you can choose.

Plan Type
Annual Billing
Monthly Billing
Individual Standard
$89.99 /year
$11.99 /month
Individual Advantage
$179.88 /year
$22.99 /month
Individual Ultimate Plus
$239.88 /year
$19.99 /month
Family (2 adults) Standard
$149.87 /year
$23.99 /month
Family (2 adults) Advantage
$287.88 /year
$45.99 /month
Family (2 adults) Ultimate Plus
$395.88 /year
$69.99 /month
Family (5 adults) Standard
$221.87 /year
$35.99 /month
Family (5 adults) Advantage
$359.88 /year
$57.99 /month
Family (5 adults) Ultimate Plus
$467.88 /year
$79.99 /month

And, unfortunately, LifeLock increases its prices at renewal. It’s not a small price increase either – you’re looking at a jump of more than 50% with most plans.

Overall Winner: LifeLock

LifeLock wins the LifeLock vs. Zander matchup, but it’s far from a flawless service, and I can’t recommend it to most people.  Poor threat resolution services and significant price hikes make it a subpar option for protecting your name, your assets, and your family. 

You can get so much better. 

I recommend Aura because it provides total peace of mind with better identity theft and credit monitoring services than LifeLock or Zander. It also has a better threat resolution team, more online security features, and more tools that parents can use to keep their kids safe on the Internet.

So I suggest signing up for Aura first. Give it a trial run, and if you don’t like it, there’s always Zander or LifeLock and other brands.