Identity theft is a common crime that happens online where a hacker takes hold of the private information of a user (mostly passwords, banking information, and address) and uses it without their consent. This may lead to the victim having money stolen from them or having crimes made under their name without their knowledge. The whole process of recovery from this takes a lot of money and time which is why it is important for users to prioritize their online information security as to avoid it.
Identity Guard was found in 1996 by Intersections Inc which aims to be one of the main providers of online security. They have continued to develop their technologies in order to protect users from newer methods of online fraud. One of their most known innovations is their use of the IBM Watson technology which is an artificial technology that can help identity online threats and give valuable guidance for users to prevent them from being victims.
Identity Guard is a service that users can use to avoid identity theft. It provides a holistic tracking and protection service by constantly monitoring information such as credit reports, bank accounts made under the user’s name, and insurance that can help them recover in case they become a victim. The service also has a wide array of information about their online information that can inform them of ways on how to better secure their online data.
The following are the tools they use to ensure that the user’s protection will always be secure:
- Constant Scanning – Their services use the IBM Watson AI to continuously search the internet for the information of the user and to see where it is being used. This is a task that is best left for the AI as aside from its wide range, it also has predictive technologies which make it capable of scanning information that are usually left behind by traditional scanning. With their scan, millions of information will be scanned for regularly. Users will be immediately notified in case their information is seen being used without their consent.
- Instant notification – Once their technology finds a suspicious activity related to a user’s information, they will be sent an immediate notification. There, they can then either approve that it was their action or if it is really made by an unknown third-party. If it is the latter, the service will immediately do security measures to prevent further damage.
- Information included – The information that the service provides is extensive as to ensure that the user will only report activity that is suspicious. Included here is the date and time of transaction, the bank or credit service it is related to, and the exact activity. It can also notify users in case their information is found in the dark web which is a marketplace for illegal activities. Lastly, the service provides a threat alert for users in case their bank or credit provider has recently been hacked.
- Risk management score – The service rates the amount of security that a user has depending on their online settings, their online privacy settings, and more.
Social insight report – With the use of IBM Watson, the service can give suggestions about the social media accounts of the use and how to improve the security of these.
As seen in their features, they have one of the best information monitoring. Their partnership with IBM Watson puts them miles ahead of competitors given its smart scanning capabilities and its dark web monitoring which is more relevant than ever nowadays. Aside from this, users that have unfortunately been a victim of identity fraud are given a $1 million insurance policy along with a dedicated personal case manager which can help them for recovery.
Identity Guard has a mobile application available for iOS and Android users. This application is an easy way for users to be notified about any important updates about their information. Instead of having to continuously browse their e-mails, they can instead receive notifications through their phone.
The phone application has a lot of the information that can be seen in their online interface. First, it shows users their current credit reports with major credit bureaus including Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax. Users are also shown guides which may tell them why their score is like this and how to improve it.
Currently, Identity Guard offers both a personal and a family version. The difference between the two is that the latter can accept more users. This is handy for families who all have individual finances. These plans are divided into the Value, Total, and Ultra plans which differ in terms of features included.
The Value plan involves all of the basic features of the application including the IBM Watson AI, Risk Management Score, $1 million insurance, and dark web monitoring.
The Total plan adds the monthly credit score, bank account takeover notifications, and checking/savings account notifications.
The Ultra plan adds 3 bureau credit report notifications and the social insight report.
Identity Guard is a very safe program which can help users protect themselves against identity theft online. It provides users with certain security measures such as constant notification and online information scanning for them to ensure that their information is not being used online without their consent. It does share any of the user’s private information and instead secures them as to ensure that hackers will not be able to take hold of it.
Identity Guard is the best application for online identity protection due to the countless security measures it provides for their users. The application is recommended for all users who want a holistic protection for their online identity.
- Has a partnership IBM Watson that allows online information scanning
- Has credit monitoring for the three major bureaus
- Has a mobile application for both iOS and Android
- Provides a risk management score for their users
- Has both a personal and a family value plan
Identity Guard is the best option for online identity protection due to their innovative security measures. Their partnership with IBM Watson allows their program to secure the user’s private information across the internet and even in the Dark Web. They also have multiple ways of notifying the user about any security breaches that they may encounter for them to immediately act in case their security is breached. Lastly, they have a $1 million insurance that can help for fraud recovery.