LifeLock vs. Experian vs. Aura: A Detailed Comparison

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Todd Jones

Product Manager at Aura

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    What’s The Best Identity Theft Protection Service For You?

    LifeLock, Experian IdentityWorks, and Aura are well-known names when it comes to identity theft protection. Although they offer many of the same features, there are important differences to consider such as whether or not they offer proactive protection or the quality of their customer service.

    To find these differentiators, we recommend asking a few key questions: 

    1. Does the service offer proactive protection? Does the service offer solutions to help protect your personal and financial information from becoming accessible to identity thieves in the first place? 
    2. How fast will you get alerted to fraud? How quickly can the service detect and alert you that your information has been compromised? 
    3. What level of customer support can you expect? If something does happen, will you have the assistance and insurance you need? 
    4. Will it protect your entire family? Can you monitor your child’s online activity and protect them from harmful websites/apps?
    5. Is it a good deal? Will the price of your plan change after the first year? 

    In this guide, we start with an overview of how LifeLock vs. Experian IdentityWorks vs. Aura compare when answering these questions. Then, we cover each provider in detail. 

    Sign up for a free trial of Aura to start protecting yourself and your loved ones against identity and financial fraud. 

    LifeLock vs. Experian IdentityWorks vs. Aura: Similarities and Differences

    Here’s how these top identity theft protection services compare: 

    Does the service offer proactive protection?

    How these services are the same:

    All services include a password manager, secure VPN, and some safe browsing software.

    How they’re different: 

    • Aura: Every plan includes cross-device antivirus protection, data broker site removal, and more ways to proactively protect your identity. 
    • LifeLock: Antivirus and other proactive protection features are only available when you pay extra for LifeLock + Norton360.
    • Experian: Doesn’t include antivirus or any other online security features for proactive protection.

    How fast will you get alerted to fraud?

    How these services are the same:

    All three companies monitor the Dark Web, public records, and your personal accounts for signs of fraud. If they notice something suspicious (e.g., change of address or unusually large credit transactions), you’ll be notified in near real time.

    How they’re different: 

    • Aura: We know about changes to your credit report at the same time as the credit bureaus, so you’ll receive alerts 4x faster than LifeLock.
    • LifeLock: They rely on the credit bureau to tell them if your credit report has been modified. 
    • Experian: As one of the three credit bureaus, they can notify you of changes to your credit report in real time.  

    What level of customer support can you expect? 

    How these services are the same:

    They all offer some form of customer support and identity theft insurance. 

    How they’re different: 

    • Aura: Every member has access to 24/7 U.S.-based fraud remediation specialists and customer support. Aura offers $1 million identity theft insurance to every adult member in every plan. 
    • LifeLock: LifeLock also provides 24/7 customer support however this doesn’t necessarily include their fraud remediation team. LifeLock offers $1 million insurance, but only on their more expensive plans.
    • Experian: Experian’s customer support is only available during certain hours of the day. Experian also offers $1 million insurance, but only on their more expensive plans.

    Will it protect your entire family? 

    How these services are the same:

    They all offer some form of identity theft protection for minors.

    How they’re different: 

    • Aura: Aura offers comprehensive protection for your child that includes all the same features that are offered to adults.
    • LifeLock: Not all features offered to adults are offered for minors. For example, LifeLock doesn’t offer crime report alerts for minors.
    • Experian: They also limit the services they offer for minors. For example, Experian doesn’t offer credit monitoring for minors.

    Is it a good deal? 

    How these services are the same:

    They all offer pricing options for individuals and families.

    How they’re different: 

    • Aura: All features are included for one price — simply choose the number of people you want to protect. Aura offers consistent pricing without sky-high renewal fees.
    • LifeLock: Their pricing plans can be difficult to figure out because each plan includes different features and different versions of those features. They also offer a few stand alone or add-on features and some of their features are only available if you bundle your LifeLock subscription with Norton 360. Finally, LifeLock typically offers a lower entry price and then nearly doubles the cost in the second year.
    • Experian: Experian’s pricing is more straightforward than LifeLock, however, you still have to choose your pricing plan carefully to make sure it includes all the features you need. 

    Next, we’ll compare each company in more detail, starting with a deep dive into our solution, Aura.

    Note: If you’re ready to start proactively protecting your personal information and finances, sign up for a free trial of Aura

    Aura: A Comprehensive Alternative to LifeLock and Experian

    Aura dashboard

    Aura is a comprehensive identity theft protection solution focused on personalized customer service and proactive identity theft protection for the whole family. 

    #1 Features to proactively protect your personal information online

    Many identity theft protection companies will focus heavily on detecting fraudulent activity and preventing further damage from being done. 

    At Aura, we believe a better place to start is to proactively protect your personal identifiable information (PII) and assets so that thieves don’t have an opportunity to use your information. 

    We’re constantly working to find new ways to keep your information away from fraudsters. For example, two recent features include: 

    • Random email generator: It’s common to use your email address as your username for all types of accounts, from bank accounts to rewards accounts at your local grocery store. This unnecessarily exposes your email address to a bunch of companies (that could become victims of a data breach). In contrast, Aura generates random email addresses for you to use when signing up for new accounts. You can manage which random email addresses will forward to your main email address to protect your email and reduce the amount of spam you receive. 
    • Anti-track: Many websites track your online browsing and purchasing activity to build an online profile of you. This is typically used for targeted advertising and sales manipulation. If you enter a malicious website, they may use this information to form personalized scams in order to steal more of your personal information. Aura's Anti-track software automatically blocks site trackers when you enter a website so they stop collecting information on you. 

    These are just two of the ways Aura works to keep you safe. With Aura, you’ll also have access to several features that will help proactively protect your identity, including: 

    • Data broker website removal: Data brokers scan public sites for personal information they can use to create a profile of you (e.g., date of birth, name change, home address, phone numbers, etc.). This profile is then sold to anyone who wants it — including scammers. Aura monitors data broker sites for your information. If your information is found, Aura will request that it be removed on your behalf. Typically they only have to remove your information for a limited time before they can put it back on the website. So, Aura works around the clock to continuously remove your information from these data broker sites. 
    • Safe browsing: It can be difficult to tell the difference between legitimate websites/extensions and malicious ones that steal your information. Aura’s safe browsing software prevents you from entering harmful websites and from downloading harmful extensions. 
    • Password manager: Aura’s password manager provides basic features such as creating, storing, and auto-filling unique passwords. However, Aura also provides the ability to update certain compromised passwords with one click. Aura will go through the process of logging into the account, verifying your identity, and changing the password for you. 
    • Virtual Private Network (VPN): Cybercriminals often spy on your online activity to intercept data you send (including passwords) and figure out your physical location from your IP address. Aura offers VPNs with military-grade encryption to prevent this from happening. 
    • Antivirus software: Cybercriminals use malware, spyware, ransomware, and adware to steal your personal and financial information. Aura’s antivirus software automatically detects and isolates these threats so they can’t infect your devices.

    #2 Features for quickly detecting compromised information

    Proactive protection is the best place to start, however, it’s impossible to stop every crime. That’s when it becomes important to monitor your online accounts, public records, and the Dark Web for signs of fraudulent activity.

    If you find something suspicious, it probably means identity thieves already have your information. But knowing your identity has been compromised gives you the opportunity to do something about it (e.g., change your password or place a credit freeze on your financial accounts). This helps you minimize financial loss and other negative effects of identity theft

    Aura constantly monitors your most sensitive information in several ways:

    Dark Web monitoring

    Hackers often sell stolen customer information on the Dark Web. Aura monitors billions of data points on the Dark Web for signs of your information. You’ll receive real-time alerts if something is found. Every alert includes why you’re receiving the alert, what to do next, and who to contact. 

    💡 Related: What Is Dark Web Monitoring? (Get a Free Dark Web Scan) →

    Credit monitoring

    Credit monitoring deals with more than just monitoring your credit score. You’ll also want to monitor your credit reports from all three major credit bureaus — Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax. Changes on your credit report (e.g., new address, new accounts, etc.) can be good indicators of financial fraud.

    Most credit protection services wait for the credit bureau to notify them of changes to your credit report which can cause delays. But Aura has access to updates on your credit report at the same time as the credit bureaus. This means Aura can alert you of changes to your credit report 4x faster than competitors. Additionally, our team will walk you through your annual credit report to help you make sure it’s accurate. 

    Aura credit monitoring

    Finally, with Aura, you can easily lock and unlock your Experian credit report with a tap. A credit lock prevents anyone from opening an account or taking out a loan that requires a credit check. If there are any inquiries into your credit file, you’ll be notified in near real-time. 

    💡 Related: 7 Best Credit Monitoring Apps (With Recommendations) →

    Bank account and home title monitoring

    While you may already keep an eye on your bank accounts and property titles, Aura will help you monitor these accounts around the clock. If someone starts pulling large amounts of cash out of your account at an ATM, you’ll be alerted right away. This is much better than finding out that your account has been drained the next time you try to use your card and it gets declined. 

    You can choose how high to set the transaction alert limit. For example, you can decide whether you want to receive alerts if there’s a transaction over $100 or over $5,000.

    Aura transaction alerts

    You’ll also receive alerts for suspicious changes to your financial accounts (e.g., new names getting added to accounts, your name getting removed, address change, etc). As well as risky transactions conducted with your Social Security number (e.g., PayDay loans). 

    Public records monitoring

    Other signals of identity theft include your Social Security number (SSN) appearing on court records, criminal records, the sex offender registery, etc. Aura monitors these platforms to make sure your information isn’t where it shouldn’t be. 

    #3 Features for personalized fraud remediation

    When you receive an alert, it’s important to take immediate action in order to prevent further damage. We believe that with something as serious as identity theft, it’s also important that you’re able to reach a real person in a timely manner.

    That’s why Aura provides 24/7 personalized customer support so that you can get the assistance you need right away. 

    If you do become a victim of identity theft, it can be a very complicated process to restore your identity. Recovery often requires filing a police report, contacting your financial institutions, contacting all three credit bureaus, resetting passwords, and much more. 

    Aura’s team of identity restoration specialists will walk you through the necessary steps, help you understand how to fill out required paperwork, and set up three-way calls to help you notify your bank, the credit bureaus, etc. (You can also make these phone calls yourself and simply rely on our team to answer any questions you may have.) 

    Aura 24/7 support

    Additionally, Aura provides lost wallet assistance. If your wallet has been stolen or misplaced, our team will help you secure your accounts and personal information so that whoever has your wallet can’t use your cards or IDs. 

    Finally, identity theft insurance can help make up for lost funds and help cover the expense of recovering your identity (e.g., legal fees or lost wages from taking time off from work). 

    It’s important to pay close attention to what the identity theft insurance will cover because some will only cover stolen funds and some legal fees but won’t cover things like lost wages. You’ll also want to take note of which pricing tier includes the insurance because many companies will only include $1 million insurance in their highest pricing tier. 

    Aura offers $1 million insurance to cover eligible legal and accountant fees, lost wages, travel expenses, care for loved ones, and loss of funds. Every adult receives this insurance regardless of the pricing plan you choose.   

    #4 Features to monitor and protect your child online

    Minors are often a target for identity theft because they have a clean record. Additionally, it can take longer for anyone to notice that the minor’s identity has been stolen because they don’t have a credit report, bank accounts, etc. that make it easy to spot fraud. 

    Aura lets you monitor your child’s personal information alongside your own. Aura will help you make sure no one is opening credit cards or bank accounts in your child’s name. Aura also helps you monitor public records and the Dark Web to make sure your child’s information was compromised during a data breach.

    Aura family identity theft protection

    In the next section, we cover how Aura provides the most flexible family plan of any identity theft protection company. 

    💡 Related: Protect Your Children From Identity Theft (With Examples) →

    #5 Simple, consistent pricing plans

    It’s common practice for identity theft protection companies like LifeLock and Experian to separate their features into different pricing tiers. For example, a basic plan might include Dark Web monitoring but if you want to monitor your credit report, you’ll have to choose the highest priced plan. Sometimes the features will be offered as add-ons rather than as a package deal. 

    Additionally, many companies (such as LifeLock) will offer a low entry price and then increase the price by nearly double in the second year. All of this makes it very difficult to know what you’re actually signing up for and what you’ll be paying long-term. 

    At Aura, we believe everyone deserves full protection at an affordable price. That’s why all Aura plans include every feature. Simply choose the number of people you want to protect and whether you want a monthly or annual plan. 

    Our family plan lets you cover up to five people — adults or kids. And, the five people don’t have to reside in the same physical home. 

    If you want to add an adult to the plan (your kid at college or your elderly parents, for example), they will receive an email that walks them through setting up their account. Each adult enjoys full privacy from other adult members (children’s information is handled by the primary account holder). 

    Additionally, there are no sky-high renewal fees with Aura.

    Visit our pricing page for more details. 

    What are customers saying about Aura? 

    We’re proud to receive 4.8 out of five stars on TrustPilot. We strive to provide an excellent product and customer support, so we’re grateful that our customers report good experiences.

    Aura on Trustpilot
    Aura Trustpilot review
    Aura Trustpilot review
    Aura Trustpilot review

    LifeLock by Norton

    Lifelock homepage

    #1 Device and PII protection

    LifeLock on its own only offers identity theft protection. However, if you choose to bundle LifeLock with Norton 360, you’ll have access to their device and online security software, including: 

    • Antivirus, malware, anti-spyware, and ransomware protection.
    • SafeCam for Windows PC (i.e., spyware specifically for your webcam).
    • VPN.
    • Privacy monitor (i.e., they monitor data broker sites and remove your information).
    • Password manager that creates, stores, and auto-fills your passwords (there’s no mention of resetting passwords for you).
    • Up to 500GB of cloud backup.

    You can access all of your LifeLock and Norton 360 features with one set of sign-on credentials. 

    #2 Identity theft monitoring and alerts

    LifeLock offers many of the monitoring services that other identity theft protection services offer, including: 

    • Dark Web monitoring
    • Privacy monitoring
    • Credit monitoring
    • Bank and investment account monitoring
    • Fictitious identity monitoring
    • Bank account and credit card monitoring
    • Crime record monitoring
    • Home title monitoring
    • Social media monitoring
    • Social Security number monitoring
    • File sharing network monitoring

    Like Aura, these are all designed to make sure your information isn’t where it shouldn’t be and that your accounts aren’t being modified by anyone but you. You’ll receive alerts if they find anything suspicious. 

    #3 Fraud remediation

    LifeLock provides live 24/7 customer support for all plans. Their customer support is listed separately from their U.S.-based fraud remediation team. This suggests only general customer support is available 24/7 and only the fraud remediation team is U.S.-based. 

    Additionally, they also advertise priority customer support as part of their Ultimate Plus plan. It’s unclear how this differs from the basic live customer support offered with the other plans. 

    LifeLock also offers identity advisors as a separate service. With this service, “specialists will work with merchants and 3rd parties to address and fix the [fraudulent] activity” (Aura also offers this for every member without additional cost). 

    LifeLock offers different insurance plans with each pricing package. The Standard plan offers up to $25,000 in stolen fund reimbursement and up to $25,000 personal expense compensation. The Advantage plan advertises up to $100,000 for stolen funds and personal expenses. The Ultimate Plus package offers up to $1 million for stolen funds and personal expenses, and all of them offer up to $1 million for legal fees. 

    #4 Child identity theft protection

    LifeLock offers identity and Social Security alerts for children and adults on your family plan. They also offer credit report detection for children. However, crime report alerts, phone takeover monitoring, and a few other types of monitoring are only offered for adults. 

    #5 Pricing

    LifeLock offers three identity theft protection packages: Standard, Advantage, and Ultimate Plus. Each of these come as individual plans, couple plans, or family plans that include two adults and up to five children. Additionally, you can choose to be billed monthly or yearly. 

    Each plan builds on the previous plan. For example, the Advantage package offers one-bureau credit monitoring only, whereas, the LifeLock Ultimate Plus plan offers three-bureau credit report monitoring

    As we mentioned earlier, parental controls and device security features are offered through Norton, so you’ll have to choose a bundled package to add these services to your ID theft protection. They also advertise packages for home title protection, an identity advisor, and a mobile app.

    The last thing to consider with LifeLock’s pricing structure is the difference in cost between the first year and following years. The price typically increases significantly after the first year. However, you do have a trial period of 60 days. If you cancel within those 60 days, you can request a refund.

    LifeLock renewal pricing
    Source: LifeLock Pricing

    IdentityWorks by Experian

    Experian homepage

    #1 Device and PII protection

    Experian only recently added online and device protection services. Taken from their announcement: “Launching November 2021 to create more robust privacy protection, the new products will include Password Manager, Secure VPN and Safe Browser.”  

    There is very little information about this security package, but there are a couple of things to note: 

    • They don’t mention antivirus software. 
    • This new product isn’t mentioned on any of their IdentityWorks pricing plans. However, they do mention that you can contact their team for more information.  

    #2 Identity theft monitoring and alerts

    As part of the IdentityWorks offering, Experian advertises that they will “scan 600,000 Dark Web pages every day and send you a notification if [they] find potentially compromising information”. 

    In addition to Dark Web surveillance, they naturally put a heavy emphasis on credit monitoring. You’ll receive your free credit report and free FICO® credit score. You’ll also receive real-time alerts on changes to your credit report and FICO® score.

    You’ll also receive suspicious activity alerts if they notice anything while monitoring:

    • Your bank accounts
    • Your SSN
    • Court records
    • Social networks
    • Address changes
    • Sex offender registry

    #3 Fraud remediation

    At the time of writing, Experian’s customer support hours for businesses are listed as 7am to 7pm, Monday through Friday. It’s unclear whether or not this is different for consumer identity theft protection.

    IdentityWorks identity theft insurance is only available in their premium and family protection plans (it’s not offered in the basic plan). In the fine print, they provide details on what the insurance will cover including lost wages, initial legal fees, and elder, spousal, and child care. 

    #4 Child identity theft protection

    Experian offers Dark Web surveillance, SSN monitoring, social network monitoring, fraud resolution and $1 million in identity theft insurance for minors. However, they don’t advertise any credit or financial account monitoring for minors. 

    #5 Pricing

    At the time of writing, Experian offers three pricing plans for consumers: Basic, Premium, and Family. (They also offer business plans.) The Basic and Premium plans are built for individuals and the family plan includes 2 adults and up to 10 children. 

    The Basic plan only includes basic credit monitoring services. To view your three-bureau credit score on a quarterly basis, you’ll need to upgrade to the Premium plan. The Premium plan also adds in identity theft protection features such as Dark Web monitoring and identity theft protection insurance. 

    Final Recommendation: Comprehensive Identity Theft Protection with Aura

    If you’re looking for comprehensive protection with a focus on proactive features, Aura may be the best choice for you. With simple pricing and a 30-day money-back guarantee, you can test our identity theft protection services with no strings attached. 

    Sign up for a free 14-day trial to start protecting you and your family today.

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    1. Financial identity theft and fraud
    2. Medical identity theft
    3. Child identity theft
    4. Elder fraud and estate identity theft
    5. “Friendly” or familial identity theft
    6. Employment identity theft
    7. Criminal identity theft
    8. Tax identity theft
    9. Unemployment and government benefits identity theft
    10. Synthetic identity theft
    11. Identity cloning
    12. Account takeovers (social media, email, etc.)
    13. Social Security number identity theft
    14. Biometric ID theft
    15. Crypto account takeovers