Identity theft is a real problem. It can cost you thousands of dollars, ruin your credit, and cause you incredible amounts of stress. That’s why we recommend services like PrivacyGuard. These services can shore up your defenses and even help with recovery if (or when!) you fall victim to identity crime.
PrivacyGuard can detect and alert you to identity threats early on, sometimes even before a financial loss and other damages occur. It offers help in recovering from
identity theft and its consequences. and the company even has an attractive identity theft insurance policy for good measure.
In our full review of PrivacyGuard, we tested the service and compared it to the competition. Now we’re going to break down what we learned about PrivacyGuard’s plans and pricing options. After all, not all identity monitoring packages are created equal. We’re also going to share the best deals on a PrivacyGuard plan. So let’s dive right in.
PrivacyGuard’s most important features
PrivacyGuard can cost as little as $10 per month (that’s cheap!). But the price you pay depends on which subscription you choose. Note that PrivacyGuard has an option for just about every budget, but you should pay attention to what’s included in each plan to ensure you get the coverage you need. We’ll talk more about the plan features and details in just a moment. But first, let’s take a closer look at PrivacyGuard’s pricing.
|PrivacyGuard Identity Protection||$9.99 per month|
|PrivacyGuard Credit Protection||$19.99 per month|
|PrivacyGuard Total Protection||$24.99 per month|
PrivacyGuard offers three different plan options. Again, we think these plans are straightforward and offer different levels of protection. Depending on the plan, you can expect identity monitoring, credit monitoring, alerts, identity theft recovery services, and insurance coverage for any losses you might incur. With that said, there are two types of monitoring to consider when evaluating a plan from PrivacyGuard (or any brand for that matter!). These are credit monitoring and identity monitoring.
We recommend credit monitoring as it helps detect criminal activity. If an identity thief attempts to take out a loan in your name, the lender will run a credit check and the loan will likely show up in your credit file.
Pro Tip: Reduce your identity theft risk by changing your passwords often, and shredding papers with personal information on it.
When we refer to “identity monitoring” as something separate from credit monitoring, we’re talking about monitoring personal information. Think of identifying info like email address, home address, phone number, etc.
Chief among the sensitive information that could be floating around online are your name and your social security number. So monitoring services look for your private info in places it shouldn’t be, like on the Dark Web, where crooked websites in the internet underworld let criminals buy and sell private information.
With PrivacyGuard, we can tell right away the services and level of coverage we’re getting. One PrivacyGuard plan offers non-credit “identity” monitoring. A second plan has credit monitoring. And a third plan has both. Easy, right?
PrivacyGuard Identity Protection is the most basic plan that includes identity monitoring without credit monitoring. If you choose this option, you’ll get monitoring for your social security number, name, birthday, phone number, physical address, email address, and more. PrivacyGuard checks for all of these things in public records and on the internet, including the Dark Web.
FYI: The Dark Web is different from the Deep Web. Anything not indexed by search engines like Google is in the Deep Web. That includes things like password-protected sites. But the Dark Web is “deeper” still: You need a special browser just to access it.1
With this plan, you can also add bank and credit card accounts to be monitored. So if a large transaction occurs, you’ll be the first to know. This allows you to investigate a potentially fraudulent transaction and jump into action to limit financial loss if necessary. Remember, early detection is key! We like that PrivacyGuard’s basic plan includes financial account monitoring — as most brands only offer this with their upper-tier packages.
Finally, PrivacyGuard’s cheapest plan includes recovery services and up to $1 million in identity theft insurance (but $1 million is actually the industry standard here).
Who it’s best for: The basic PrivacyGuard Identity Protection plan is a safe bet for people looking for an affordable safety net without credit monitoring.
Like the name suggests, PrivacyGuard Credit Protection keeps a finger on the pulse of your credit. If you go with this plan, PrivacyGuard constantly scans the three major credit bureaus and monitors your files 24/7. It will only check your scores once per month (some brands offer daily score tracking), but note that it checks them with all three bureaus, not just one.
Unfortunately, PrivacyGuard Credit Protection does not include recovery services or insurance. This actually surprised us, especially since the subscription fee is $19.99 per month. For that price, we almost always see these additional (but still pretty basic) features. We recommend finding a service that offers both recovery and insurance, as you never know when an identity theft crisis might occur.
Who it’s best for: Folks looking for credit monitoring may find this plan useful, but we strongly recommend that you focus on plans that offer restoration and insurance.
FYI: Not all identity theft will cost you. Some banks and credit card companies protect their customers and don’t hold them liable for financial loss in the wake of identity theft or fraud. But it is possible to lose a lot of money to an identity thief. As they say, it’s better to be safe than sorry. That’s why we recommend you find a package option with recovery services and at least $1 million in insurance.
PrivacyGuard Total Protection is the top-of-the-line option. This includes all of the features that the other plans include. You’ll get the credit monitoring that comes with ‘Credit Protection’, plus the identity monitoring, recovery, and insurance protection that you’d enjoy with ‘Identity Protection’ — all wrapped into one service. Hence the name Total Protection.
We like that PrivacyGuard Total Protection also includes an annual public records report, registered offender monitoring (which includes sex offender registry alerts), emergency travel assistance, medical records reimbursement, and more.
Did You Know: To compile your credit file, credit monitoring bureaus look at public records and aggregate information offered by lenders and creditors.2
Some of the bonus features offered by PrivacyGuard are useful personal finance tools. In our review of the brand, we were pretty impressed by their credit score simulator. Of course, this isn’t a necessary feature, but it’s certainly a nice touch that many competitors don’t offer. The company also has educational tools that can help you stay on top of your identity theft risks.
However, at $24.99 per month, it’s a touch pricier than top contenders in the industry. For instance, Identity Guard offers the same amount of protection for $19.99 per month.
Who it’s best for: Total Protection is best for those looking for a full-service identity protection plan at a reasonable price.
Credit monitoring, identity monitoring, and the safety net we get from recovery services and insurance each have something to offer. That’s why we usually recommend signing up with a subscription that gets you all of the above. IdentityForce, for instance, has great options that cover all the major points. We’ve found that a little extra peace of mind goes a long way.
If you’re interested in PrivacyGuard, you can sign up now, or you can wait to find deals and discounts. The company has been known to offer percentage-off discounts from time to time. But starting at only $9.99 per month, the plans are pretty affordable to begin with. With that said, here are the best deals on PrivacyGuard right now.
|ID Protection||Credit Protection||Total Protection|
|Dedicated ID Fraud Resolution Support||Credit Score Simulator||Dedicated ID Fraud Resolution Support|
|Annual Public Records Report||24/7 Daily Credit Monitoring||Annual Public Records Report|
|Online Fraud Assistance||Financial Calculator Suite||Online Fraud Assistance|
|Black Market Website Surveillance||Triple-Bureau Credit Report & Scores||Black Market Website Surveillance|
|Lost and Stolen Item Assistance||Monthly Credit Score Tracking||Lost and Stolen Item Assistance|
|Credit Score Simulator|
|24/7 Daily Credit Monitoring|
|Financial Calculator Suite|
|Monthly Credit Score Tracking|
We found that PrivacyGuard’s cheapest plan was a decent deal. You should keep in mind that it doesn’t include credit monitoring, though. The next level up, PrivacyGuard Credit Protection, doesn’t look as cost-effective to us. We’re used to seeing plans priced at $19.99 per month, but they usually include recovery and insurance, whereas the PrivacyGuard Credit Protection option doesn’t.
The best value we found is clearly the PrivacyGuard Total Protection plan. It’s not the cheapest plan we’ve seen, but it’s more or less in line with competitors like LifeLock and IdentityWorks. Most importantly, it has coverage we can get behind. After all, if you’re going to spend money month after month for identity protection, we think you should spend enough to get high-quality coverage.
One area that we found PrivacyGuard lacking in was family plans and plans that cover children. If you happen to need identity monitoring for a spouse or a loved one, then you’re pretty much out of luck with PrivacyGuard. Same goes for if you’re wanting to protect your little one — there are great child plans out there — but PrivacyGuard doesn’t offer much in this category.
PrivacyGuard has been around since 1992.3 Its parent company is Trilegiant, which specializes in all kinds of protection like consumer protection and business protection services, as well as the identity protection products that PrivacyGuard handles.
Note that PrivacyGuard has a decent reputation with its customers. Its parent company doesn’t have a perfect record, though. Trilegiant got in hot water for deceptive billing back in 2001. However, that was quite a while ago. Since then the company hasn’t had major issues, as far as we know.
No, it doesn’t. Unfortunately, this would be impossible. It’s particularly tough with the Dark Web. Nobody even knows how big the Dark Web is! So PrivacyGuard and its competitors just do their best to check everything they can. They’ll cover all the criminal hangouts on the Dark Web that they know about, and they’re always adding to their list of sites.
With the Credit Protection and Total Protection plans, you’ll get monitoring for all three major credit bureaus: Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion.
One-bureau monitoring isn’t bad, but three-bureau monitoring is better. That’s because the credit bureaus don’t share information with each other.4 They draw from many of the same sources, but there’s no guarantee that they’ll each always see every key piece of information.
If you have Credit Protection or Total Protection, you can request a free credit report every 30 days.5
You can cancel using a link in the My Account page online. You can also cancel in writing, by phone, or by email.6
Grannan, Cydney. Retrieved June 17, 2020. What’s the Difference Between the Deep Web and the Dark Web? Encyclopedia Britannica.
DeNicola, Louis. (2019, March 6). What Are Credit Bureaus and How Do They Work? Experian.
Privacy Guard on Facebook. Retrieved June 17, 2020.
Issa, Natalie. (2019, April 18). How Do Credit Scores Work? Credit.com.
Privacy Guard. Retrieved June 17, 2020. Site & Technical Questions.
Privacy Guard. Retrieved June 17, 2020. Terms & Conditions.