1. Identity Guard
Identity Guard has its roots in a company called Intersections Inc., which has been around since 1996. Intersections Inc. eventually created Identity Guard as a way for consumers to get identity theft protection without having to go through a bank or financial institution. Here are some of the pros and cons of Identity Guard.
- Employee training
- Three monthly breach readiness plans available
- Uses artificial intelligence through IBM’s Watson
- Vulnerability scanning
- Risk management score
- Safe browsing extension
- Anti-phishing app
- No free trial
- No money back guarantee offered
IBM’s Watson is a cool feature that shows just how much the identity theft game has changed. If companies are comfortable using artificial intelligence like Watson, then there’s no telling where the industry might go next. If you want cutting edge AI, Identity Guard is a good choice. However, there’s no free trials for the business packages.
LifeLock is one of the most recognizable identity theft brands out there. They have an aggressive marketing strategy that all but guarantees you’ve seen its products advertised at some point. Here’s a few LifeLock pros and cons.
- Dark web monitoring
- Fraud detection
- Credit card monitoring
- Internet security
- Breach response services
- Well-known brand
- Website a little light on specifics
- Still uses Equifax products
LifeLock has a comprehensive suite of products available, but they do still partner with Equifax. Equifax, as you may remember, had a famously big data breach. LifeLock jumped on that data breach by offering its services. That’s a fair enough response, but those services included credit monitoring and reporting from none other than Equifax. If that contradiction bugs you, then LifeLock may not be for you.
*LifeLock does not monitor all transactions at all businesses.
**The credit scores provided are VantageScore 3.0 credit scores based on data from Equifax, Experian and TransUnion respectively. Any one bureau VantageScore mentioned is based on Equifax data only. Third parties use many different types of credit scores and are likely to use a different type of credit score to assess your creditworthiness.
IdentityForce was officially founded in 2005, but its founding family, the Bearaks, has been involved in the security industry since the late 1970s. The company’s website advertises a 100 percent success rate “in stolen identity-related events.” Let’s take a closer look at what that means via some pros and cons.
- 40-year history in security
- 14-day free business trial
- Up to $1 million in identity restoration insurance
- Fraud detection
- Covers lost wages
- Address monitoring
- Black market surveillance
- Must talk to live agent on phone before qualifying for business trial
- Customer service not available on major holidays
The 14-day free business trial is a perk that not every company offers. But to get that free trial, you must first fill out an online form and consent to getting contacted by a telephone agent. To some degree, this makes sense, as no two companies will have identical identity theft protection needs. Yet it’s still a frustrating requirement for business owners who would prefer a simpler way to sign up.
Why Are Businesses Targets of Identity Theft?
Because they have customers, and customers have money. More precisely, customers have personal information and payment info stored on company servers.
OK, so maybe that’s an overly simple explanation. But in 2016, identity thieves and fraudsters stole a combined $16 billion from more than 15 million customers.
Think of your business like a car parked downtown. You can lock your car up, which is nice. But you better do more than that. Otherwise, someone is going to shatter a window and grab something expensive that you left sitting in the front seat
It’s not only about making it harder for thieves to break into your business network. It’s also about making you and your customers less attractive targets. That doesn’t mean there’s any excuse for identity thieves to do what they do, but if they see a potentially easy score, they’re going to hack into your system and take advantage of it.
To extend the car metaphor a bit further, you may think that your business is too small and not flashy enough to get hit. You aren’t a gigantic national business with millions of customers, so why should you worry? But it’s not just the fancy sports cars that get burglarized, and it’s not just multimillion-dollar businesses that fall victim to identity thieves.
The Consequences of a Data Breach
Why should a customer trust a company if it can’t even keep their personal information safe? For many people, that’s what it’s going to come down to. Unless you monopolize your local market completely, you’re going to lose business if it turns out that you’re consistently vulnerable to identity theft attacks.
And make no mistake, a lot of businesses are more vulnerable than they want to admit. The illusion of strength is not nearly the same thing as actual strength. Denial is easier, sure. It’s also cheaper, at least in the short-term. But in the long run, you get what you pay for. And if you don’t pay for any kind of system security, then you get nothing except, probably, a lot of data breaches.
Cleaning these things up takes time. And you can’t just sweep it under the rug and hope that no one notices. You’re ethically obligated to tell your customers that their data has been exposed to bad actors. In most states, you’re also legally obligated to alert customers to a breach.
Once customers start classifying you as “prone to data breaches,” it can be hard to recover. When someone does business with you, you don’t want them to think that their personal information is “safe enough” or “probably fine.” Those are hedge words. Instead, you want them to be assured that their payment information is as safe as you can make it in the Internet age. The bare minimum isn’t good enough.
Features of Business Identity Theft Solutions
A trusted cybersecurity advisor will make a world of difference in your business. Many identity theft protection services offer this feature, and it’s certainly worth using it to its full potential. Cybersecurity advising puts an expert in your corner — to strengthen your network and transform your security plan into a tangible asset.
Customers are the lifeblood of your business. That’s why customer protection tops the list of ID theft protection features. With customer protection, you can conduct business with confidence, knowing your customers’ information is protected from data breaches, cyber criminals, and the various ways it can fall into the wrong hands.
More identity theft protection services are offering value-packed business resources to their clients. These resources include everything from exclusive content, industry reports, statistical insight, and the list goes on. A treasure trove of business resources will help your company to steer clear of identity theft and fraud.
Dark Web Monitoring
Dark web monitoring for your business has never been so critical. The underworld of the internet — the dark web — is where criminals buy, sell, and trade sensitive information. The best identity theft protection services offer this feature. And it’s the only way to know if information connected to your business ends up on the dark web.
There are chinks in the armor of any business, big or small. That’s why Risk Detection is a feature to look for when shopping for fraud protection. Risk detection consistently scans your network to identity weak links or vulnerable points of attack. No business should go without it. The stakes have never been higher.
Employee Cybersecurity Training
Employee Cybersecurity Training is one of the most effective ways to shore up your defense against cyber criminals. Let’s be honest — there are a million ways a well-meaning employee can deal a fraudster a fine hand. But with training, your staff will know what tactics to look for, potentially saving your business from major losses.
Data Breach Response
Another feature for business fraud protection, data breach response offers peace of mind when it matters most. As recent history has shown, a data breach can sink a business. That’s why choosing an ID theft protection service that offers data breach response is a smart move. Your customers will thank you, not to mention your bottom line.
Incident Response Plans
Incident Response Plans are all the rage for a reason. These quick and nimble response plans can be deployed at a moment’s notice. And they can cover a range of cyber crimes and data breaches. As they say, if you fail to plan, you plan to fail. So keep your business on the offense with ready-made incident response plans.
Several identity theft services for business offer employee benefits. We’re not talking 401k and a gym membership. Rather, these benefits include identity theft restoration services. In the event your employee’s information is compromised, a dedicated team works to fix it. Remember, it’s not just your customers who suffer from a data breach.