LifeLock Review

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LifeLock Review

Identity theft is scary nowadays. LifeLock provides robust tools to help staunch identify theft and to get you back on your feet after an attack. They offer incredible protection, ranging from identity theft insurance and alerts to credit monitoring and 24/7 customer service. However, they haven’t had a clean history, paying $100M in fines for deceptive practices, and their services aren’t cheap. 

Overall
4.5
  • Price
  • Protection
  • Customer Service
  • Value

Pros

  • 60-day money-back guarantee
  • $25k to $1M in identity theft insurance
  • Wide variety of monitoring and alerts
  • 24/7 customer service

Cons

  • Poor security history
  • Insurance doesn’t cover all types of identity theft

Identity theft is scary in today’s day and age. There were 16.7 million victims of identity theft in 2017 alone. As you likely know, identity theft can literally ruin your life. 

LifeLock presents various tools to help you both deter and recover against identity theft. Overall, LifeLock is a great option for those considering identity theft protection options, but it’s important to note the firm’s rocky history. 

What Is LifeLock?

LifeLock is an identity theft protection company founded in 2005 and acquired by Symantec in 2017. The company was renamed Norton LifeLock in 2019, offering a wide variety of products with Norton 360 protection, identity theft monitoring, alerts, insurance, security, and credit monitoring. 

They currently serve over millions of people, but they have had a bumpy history in the past. In 2015, LifeLock paid $100 million to settle a charge by the Federal Trade Commission for deceptive advertising and failure to secure customer’s personal information. 

How Does LifeLock Work?

As a part of Norton 360, LifeLock combines internet security, identity theft protection, and insurance into one package covering threats from many angles.

With the standard package, LifeLock alone provides social security and identity theft alerts. Their algorithm searches across the internet to hunt sources of privacy breaches, including false information connected to your identity and information on the dark web. Furthermore, they provide credit reports and credit monitoring to supplement your protection. 

For more expensive packages, Norton 360 comes in to offer advanced device security. Norton antivirus software stops over 7 million daily threats on average through ad blockers and virus protection. The technology also helps secure your information on public Wi-Fi via Secure VPN. 

LifeLock provides other degrees of security through their identify theft insurance coined “Million Dollar Protection.” Although the amount of insurance varies through the pricing tiers, each offers varying stolen fund reimbursements and $1M coverage for lawyers and experts. 

However, the key takeaway is that LifeLock helps prevent identity theft and provides the resources needed to get your life back on track. In today’s technological world, it’s almost impossible to completely stop hackers and thieves, but it’s possible to recover after an attack. 

Pros & Cons Of LifeLock

LifeLock offers a treasure trove of benefits for its consumers that can provide layers of defense and recovery against identity theft. However, the service is not cheap and lacks a family coverage option, making LifeLock even more expensive for families. 

Perhaps the most significant concerns are that LifeLock hasn’t had a perfect track record under the law and that its insurance doesn’t cover all angles of identity theft. For instance, while you’re insured against loss of income, legal costs, and fraudulent withdrawals, you’re not protected against false medical bills. 

Pros

  • 60-day money-back guarantee
  • Million Dollar Protection insurance package offers $1M in coverage for lawyers and experts and $25k to $1M for stolen funds reimbursement
  • Additional credit monitoring tools
  • Wide variety of protection tools helping to fight identity theft
  • Restoration department enables you to recover after an attack
  • 24/7 customer service

Cons

  • Pricey. Can cost hundreds of dollars per year
  • Lack of family coverage option. Thus, coverage for families is costly
  • Poor security history. Fined $100M in 2015 by the FTC for deceptive practices
  • Insurance doesn’t cover all facets of identity theft

How Much Does LifeLock Cost?

LifeLock is not a free-to-use tool. There are four different tiers with varying benefits and perks. As you spend more per month, you get access to additional Norton 360 tools that provide further protection.

LifeLock Standard ($11.99/mo)

The cheapest LifeLock plan offers basic amenities, and for your first year, you only pay $9.99/mo. 

  • Up to $25k coverage for both stolen funds and personal expense reimbursement 
  • Up to $1M coverage for lawyers and experts
  • Social security and data breach alerts
  • Stolen wallet protection
  • Credit and dark web monitoring
  • Address change verification

Norton 360 With LifeLock Select ($14.99/mo)

The next level of protection finally introduces Norton 360 benefits, and for your first year as well, you only pay $9.99/mo. This plan includes the perks included with LifeLock Standard.

  • 24/7 live support
  • Norton 360 security and secure VPN for up to 5 devices
  • Antivirus software
  • Ad-tracker blocker
  • Parental controls

Norton 360 With LifeLock Advantage ($24.99/mo)

The third most expensive tier now improves on some of the previous amenities while introducing more as well. For your first year, you only pay $19.99/mo.

  • Up to $100k coverage for both stolen funds and personal expense reimbursement 
  • Up to $1M coverage for lawyers and experts
  • Expanded Norton 360 security and secure VPN for up to 10 devices
  • Bank account alerts
  • Annual full credit report
  • Extended alerts to crimes committed in your name

Norton 360 With LifeLock Ultimate Plus ($34.99/mo)

These names just get longer and longer as you pay more money. The crème de la crème of the tiers (or the more expensive) has the most robust protection features, including a discounted $29.99/mo offer for your first year. 

  • Up to $1M coverage for both stolen funds and personal expense reimbursement 
  • Up to $1M coverage for lawyers and experts
  • Priority 24/7 support
  • Credit monitoring, scores, and full reports from all three bureaus
  • 401K, investment accounts, and bank account application alerts
  • Sex offender registry reports
  • Unlimited Norton 360 security and secure VPN

Is LifeLock Worth The Cost?

Well, this is honestly a difficult question to answer. Let’s run through some comparisons. 

Bar chart for total yearly costs of LifeLock. These totals don’t factor first year discounts.

From our chart, we can see that the Plus costs almost $300 more than the Standard plan. We can’t answer the “worth it” question for you because everyone’s situation is vastly different. 

Say you recently heard that your full social security number was stolen. Perhaps it might be worth investing in a higher tier plan to cover all your bases.

At the same time, you might just need basic credit score monitoring and updates. In that case, LifeLock wouldn’t be the best fit for you, and you could use free products like Credit Sesame instead.

I suggest you take a thorough look at what LifeLock offers and see what tier seems the best for you. 

For the most part, I think the Standard and Select plans provide reasonably good amenities and insurance in the case of identity theft. With a rate of $14.99/mo (Select) for $25k in coverage, you are getting a lot of bank for your buck. Furthermore, this estimation doesn’t even value the intangible benefits provided.

Is LifeLock Safe?

LifeLock nowadays is an okay-ish company. To login, the company offers two-factor and multi-factor authentication, helping to stop potential hackers. 

However, LifeLock hasn’t been perfectly clean in the past. Just a few years ago, in 2015, LifeLock was fined $100 million for deceptive advertising and failures to protect its consumer’s data. Considering that you’re giving this firm your name, address, and social security number, it’s a bit scary to think that they weren’t taking the utmost care of your personal information.

Are they completely, 100% safe? Hard to say, given their track record. 

It’s good to note that they also don’t store a lot of personal information, only to the extent of your name, email address, and other user-related data (i.e. cookies). Thus, given that they don’t store your SSN and that they already got in trouble, perhaps they have improved.

Will LifeLock Hurt My Credit Score?

Although LifeLock provides credit score monitoring for its higher-paid tiers, it will not hurt your credit score. According to my conversation with their customer service team, LifeLock doesn’t pull credit reports from any of the bureaus. Thus, the LifeLock scoring system is entirely independent of your actual credit score.

In reality, LifeLock can only help your credit score by immediately notifying you when someone opens a fraudulent account under your name. 

How Does LifeLock Make Money?

LifeLock makes most of its money from people signing up for its products. Seeing that they have millions of users, they make a lot of money from everyone’s paid monthly plans. 

How Is LifeLock’s Customer Service?

LifeLock offers 24/7 customer service over both the phone and live chat. 

If you need to contact LifeLock via the phone, you can call at (800) 416-0599.

How Could LifeLock Improve?

LifeLock could improve by making sure it establishes a safe, non-fraudulent identity. As a consequence of their 2015 sentencing, it’s hard to place your trust in a company like this until they have proven themselves over.

The company could offer a family identity-protection service. For a family of four, you and your spouse must pay separate individual memberships. While you can add your children for $5.99/mo, a Standard plan would cost approximately $30/mo, whereas Plus would hover $80/mo. That’s extremely expensive for most families. 

However, in terms of perks, LifeLock offers some of the best technologies and coverage plans to protect and secure your identity. Moreover, not many firms can say they have 24/7 customer service, which helps put LifeLock at a 5-star rating in this category. 

How Does LifeLock Fare Against Competitors?

lifelockexperian logoidentity guard logoid shield logo
Cost/mo.$11.99-34.99$9.99-19.99$7.50-25.00$12.95-17.95
Identity theft insurance$25k-1M$500k-1M$1M$1M
Free trial
Credit score monitoring
Mobile app
A.I. monitoring
24/7 customer service
Sign UpSign UpSign UpSign Up

How To Get Started On LifeLock

To start with LifeLock, all you need to do is create an account and sign up for one of their plans. During sign-up, you’ll have to provide your name, address, SSN, and other basic personal information. Afterward, you’ll get access to robust features to keep your life in check in the case of identity theft. 

A great note is that LifeLock offers a 60-day money-back guarantee.

Generally speaking, LifeLock will send you alerts if there’s any suspicious activity. For example, if LifeLock detects a new credit card has been opened, they’ll send you an alert asking to confirm if that’s your card. If not, then LifeLock will automatically take measures to staunch further identity theft damage. 

As LifeLock puts it, a credit freeze alone might not be enough to stop the bleeding. With their plethora of recovery options, LifeLock can help patch you up after an attack. 

LifeLock mobile app.

LifeLock also features an excellent mobile app with a 4.6/5.0 star rating per the Apple app store on 6/24/2020. The app is well-designed and displays some of the essential features mentioned previously, such as credit, dark web, bank account monitoring. 

Should You Use LifeLock?

This is honestly a difficult question to answer. Everyone’s situation is different, and LifeLock isn’t an absolute necessity by any means. 

Like I mentioned earlier, if you fear that your identity is compromised, then LifeLock is a good investment. However, if you only need basic monitoring, then free credit score monitoring like Credit Sesame will do a great job. 

Keep in mind that LifeLock hasn’t been the cleanest company in the past. This fact is important considering the information you’re providing them. However, it’s clear that LifeLock is making efforts to put their past behind them and to focus on their future.

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