Can an App Keep Your Identity Safe?
Identity theft protection services are designed to protect your personal information and financial assets by alerting you to signs of fraud. They also typically include insurance and access to specialists who can help you resolve any fraudulent activity that does occur.
Identity theft protection apps let you manage all of this from your mobile device.
In this guide: We’ll show how Aura, our identity theft protection app, works. Then, we’ll also briefly cover four other apps to aid in your search. For each option, we’ll include an overview of the product, pricing details, and customer reviews.
If you think Aura might be for you after reading about our app below, you can sign up for a free 14-day trial of Aura here →
1. Aura: All-in-one Identity Theft Protection App for the Whole Family
Aura protects your identity in multiple ways:
- Proactively protecting your personal information (and keeping it safe from fraudsters).
- Alerting you if criminals gain access to your personal information, passwords, and credentials.
- Helping you resolve instances of fraud and cover the costs of identity theft.
Aura’s mobile apps for iOS and Android let you manage all of this from nearly any mobile device.
Aura’s app features can be divided into two categories:
- Keeping you and your family safe from online threats. Although it’s impossible to stop every crime, there are ways to limit the chances of cybercriminals stealing your personal information. Aura provides multiple layers of proactive online protection — including a virtual private network (VPN), antivirus software, password manager, etc. — to keep your personal information away from criminals.
- Viewing and responding to alerts anytime, anywhere. If thieves do get hold of your information, it’s important to take action as soon as possible (to prevent further damage and secure your identity from scammers). Aura provides near real-time alerts of suspicious activity on your personal information, financial accounts, and in public records, which you can view and respond to on nearly any device. Aura also provides live customer support 24/7 to help you understand and resolve alerts.
In the following sections, we’ll dig deeper into the features and benefits of these categories.
Download and install the app:
1. How Aura keeps you and your family safe from online threats
The internet is full of people who want to spy on your online activity and steal your personal information. Fraudsters use your information to steal your assets or create personalized scams to steal more of your information.
This is particularly true for mobile devices connected to public Wi-Fi. Anytime you connect to public internet sources without digital protection, your online activity is visible for anyone to see. This leaves you exposed to potential cyber attacks and identity theft.
Aura provides multiple layers of digital and online protection and is constantly finding new ways to proactively protect your information.
With the Aura mobile app, you can:
- Secure your online activity on the go. Aura’s VPN with military-grade encryption keeps your online activity private and secure. (VPNs are available for Windows, Android, MacOS, and iOS.)
- Block malicious sites that would steal your information. Aura automatically blocks harmful websites that can steal your personal information so that you don’t accidentally enter one.
- Protect your device(s) against malware and viruses. Run virus scans anytime to detect and isolate spyware, adware, ransomware, etc. (Antivirus software is available for Windows, Android, and MacOS.)
- Sync and securely store your passwords across all your devices. Create, store, and auto-fill all your passwords on one platform, and use them on any device.
- Keep your information from being sold on data broker websites. Data brokers scan public platforms and gather your information to create a profile on you. This can lead to increased spam and scam calls, emails, and texts. Aura constantly monitors data broker lists for your personal information and can send removal requests on your behalf.
- Generate random email addresses to use when creating online accounts. Keep your personal email private from hackers and use a secondary email instead. (All emails get forwarded to your main email address.)
💡Related: 10 Ways Scammers Hack You With Your Email Address →
2. How Aura’s alerts help you stop fraudsters fast (anytime, anywhere)
In an ideal world, criminals would never have access to your personal information. In reality, it’s impossible to stop every crime.
If your personal information or financial assets become compromised because of data breaches or cyber attacks, it’s important to know right away so you can take action to secure your accounts and personal information.
This is where Aura’s mobile app can improve your peace of mind. Instead of waiting until you’re able to log into a computer to respond to alerts, mobile apps let you respond immediately.
Aura’s app makes it especially easy to respond to suspicious activity. Every alert comes with details on why you’re receiving the alert, what next steps to take, and who to contact for further assistance.
Aura also provides some of the fastest alerts in the industry — up to 4x faster than competitors.
Here’s an overview of the types of monitoring services and alerts Aura provides:
- Dark Web monitoring. Information stolen during a data breach is typically sold on the Dark Web. Aura constantly monitors billions of data points on the Dark Web for signs of your Social Security number (SSN), email addresses, passwords, etc. You’ll be sent an alert if your information is found.
- Credit monitoring. If an identity thief takes out a credit card or opens a new line or credit in your name, this would appear on one or more of your credit reports. (This is just one example of fraudulent activity that would show up on your credit file.) It would also affect your credit score. Aura alerts you of any changes to your credit reports from all three of the major credit bureaus (Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion) and lets you monitor your credit score from your mobile device.
- Transaction monitoring. When criminals get hold of your bank account or credit card information, they will often try to spend as much money in as short of a time as possible. Aura helps you catch these spending sprees right away by setting transaction limits for any of your bank accounts and credit cards. If there’s a transaction over the transaction threshold, you’ll receive an alert. You’ll also receive alerts if your information shows up in risky transactions like PayDay loans.
- Financial account monitoring. Fraudsters will do things like change the address on your bank account so that your bank statements will be sent to them, or add their name to your home title to improve their credit score (which inversely would have a negative affect on your credit score). Aura monitors your financial accounts and sends alerts of any changes. You’ll also receive alerts if new accounts are opened using your information.
- Personal information monitoring. If an identity thief uses your name to commit crimes, file for taxes or unemployment, or any number of things, your driver’s license, passport, SSN, etc. could appear on various public records. Aura monitors public records for signs of your personal information and alerts you if someone is using them without your permission.
If you do become a victim of identity theft, Aura’s team of U.S.-based Identity Fraud Resolution specialists are available 24/7 to answer your calls and emails.
They can help you complete each step of the fraud recovery process, from filling out forms to setting up three-way calls between you and the credit bureaus.
Aura’s dedicated team is also available to help you know what to do if your wallet has been stolen (e.g., contacting your financial institutions, replacing your ID, insurance cards, etc.).
💡 Related: How To Know (And Check) If Your Identity Has Been Stolen →
Bonus: One-click Experian credit lock
A credit lock prevents criminals from applying for loans or opening new accounts in your name (as the lender will be unable to do a hard inquiry on your credit history).
Aura lets you lock and unlock your credit with just a tap from your mobile device. When your credit is locked, you’ll still receive alerts that a request was made (even though it was denied). Then, you can reach out to our fraud remediation team, and they’ll help you secure your accounts.
💡 Related: Credit Lock vs. Credit Freeze: Which Do You Need? →
How much does Aura’s identity theft protection app cost?
Most identity theft protection services make you pay for the most expensive plan in order to get full protection. Additionally, many ID protection services offer a lower price for the first year, and then hike up the prices significantly the second year.
Aura provides all-in-one pricing options without sky-high renewal rates. Simply choose the number of people you want to protect: individual, couple, or family of five. All features are included for every member.
You’ll even get $1 million in insurance for eligible losses due to identity theft insurance for every adult member.
What are customers saying about the Aura app?
At the time of writing, Aura has 4.6 out of five stars with 1.3k reviews on the Apple Store and 4.7 out of five stars with 772 reviews on Google Play.
Apple Store reviews:
Google Play reviews:
2. LifeLock: Highly rated protection (but more expensive)
Overview: LifeLock’s mobile app lets you view and respond to fraud alerts, access your credit score and credit report from your mobile device, and contact their member services team.
If you bundle LifeLock with Norton 360, you will also have access to antivirus software and their Identity Lock feature. While the name might sound like you can prevent thieves from using any of your personal identification, Identity Lock simply lets you lock and unlock your TransUnion credit report.
It’s also worth noting that bundling LifeLock with Norton 360 requires an entirely different app.
LifeLock data breach in the news: The company recently disclosed that sensitive information from thousands of LifeLock customers — including passwords — was compromised in a December, 2022 data breach [*]. If you're looking for a secure LifeLock alternative, consider trying Aura free for 14 days.
Pricing: LifeLock offers several options for individuals and families. These options include a mix of identity theft and credit protection services, with each one building on the previous plan. For example, the Standard plan offers one-bureau credit monitoring, while the Ultimate Plus plan offers three-bureau credit monitoring.
You’ll want to pay close attention to their pricing page. LifeLock is known for offering a low price for the first year and then significantly increasing the price in following years. For just LifeLock, prices range from $9.99/user/month to $34.99+/user/month.
Recommended for: Individuals or families who want to pick and choose what features to include in their identity theft protection plan.
Customer reviews: LifeLock has 4.6 out of five stars on Apple Store and 4.4 stars on Google Play. You can read reviews on the Apple Store here and reviews on Google Play here.
💡 Related: LifeLock vs. Experian vs. Aura: A Detailed Comparison →
3. IdentityForce: Premium price for lower-rated identity protection app
Overview: TransUnion is one of the three major credit bureaus, and IdentityForce is their identity theft protection solution. IdentityForce’s mobile app includes threat alerts, a VPN, your credit score (you may need to log in on a laptop or desktop to view your annual credit report), and an identity vault where you can store passwords, email addresses, etc.
It’s also worth mentioning that IdentityForce updated the UI for their app. So, while many reviews mention an outdated interface, the new version may be more user-friendly.
Pricing: IdentityForce offers two pricing plans: The first one only includes identity theft monitoring features, and the second package adds on credit monitoring services.
The types of alerts you receive through the mobile app will depend on the plan you choose. At the time of writing, prices range from $17.99/user/month to $23.99/user/month.
Recommended for: IdentityForce may be a good option for individuals or families who don’t mind paying premium prices for comprehensive credit protection.
Customer reviews: IdentityForce has 3.1 out of five stars on Apple Store and 2.5 out of five stars on Google Play. You can read reviews on the Apple Store here and reviews on Google Play here.
💡 Related: 7 Best Credit Monitoring Apps (with Recommendations) →
4. IDShield: Social media monitoring and other family features
Overview: IDShield’s mobile app lets you assess your creditworthiness with a credit score tracker and respond to identity theft alerts.
These alerts include standard Dark Web monitoring and public records alerts as well as social media monitoring and sex offender list alerts (so you can see registered sex offenders within a 5-mile radius of your home address). They also provide a section with documentation on FAQs, tips for keeping your information safe, and general information about identity theft.
Pricing: IDShield plans cover either individuals or families with the choice of one-bureau or three-bureau credit monitoring (at an additional cost).
Prices range from $14.95/user/month to $34.95/month for the family plan.
Recommended for: IDShield may be a good option for families who want to monitor social media accounts.
Customer reviews: IDShield has 4.8 stars out of five on Apple Store and 4.6 stars out of five on Google Play. You can read reviews on the Apple Store here and reviews on Google Play here.
💡 Related: Is Discover Identity Theft Protection Worth It? Pros, Cons & Alternatives →
5. PrivacyGuard: Customizable protection plans based on your needs
Overview: PrivacyGuard’s mobile app offers three-bureau credit monitoring, SSN monitoring for you and up to 10 children, identity theft notifications, and bank account monitoring.
Depending on which plan you choose, you’ll also have access to their financial calculator suite which helps you plan future financial decisions. Although they advertise that you’ll be assigned a dedicated fraud specialist if you do become a victim of identity theft, they don’t advertise 24/7 customer support or U.S.-based identity restoration.
Pricing: PrivacyGuard offers total protection, which includes identity theft and credit protection. Or, you can choose just identity theft protection or just credit protection. Prices range from $9.99/user/month to $24.99/user/month.
Recommended for: PrivacyGuard may be a good option for individuals who only want either credit protection or ID theft protection.
Customer Reviews: PrivacyGuard has 4.8 out of five stars on Apple Store and 4.7 out of five stars on Google Play. You can read reviews on the Apple Store here and reviews on Google Play here.
Final Recommendation: Choose the App That’s Right For You
In order to find the best identity theft protection app for you and your family, we recommend signing up for free trials of a few services. This lets you try multiple options at once and test each feature before committing to one service.
Sign up for a free 14-day trial of Aura to start protecting your identity and financial assets wherever you are.