Identity theft can feel like a constant threat in today‘s digital world. According to the Federal Trade Commission‘s 2021 data, over 1.4 million cases of identity theft and fraud were reported in the United States alone.
Having your personal and financial information accessed and misused by criminals can be incredibly stressful and time-consuming to resolve. But the good news is that identity theft restoration services can help you reclaim your identity and restore your accounts quickly and easily.
In this comprehensive guide, I‘ll walk you through the top identity theft restoration services for 2023 based on factors like pricing, features, restoration assistance, and more. By the end, you‘ll have the information you need to choose the right restoration service to protect your identity.
Here are the key topics I‘ll cover:
- How identity theft restoration services work
- The top 3 services for 2023
- What to look for when choosing a service
- 5 steps for picking the best service for your needs
- If restoration services are worth the cost
- My #1 recommendation
Let‘s get started!
How Do Identity Theft Restoration Services Work?
Identity theft restoration services provide complete assistance to reinstate your identity and good standing after fraud occurs. Their experts go beyond just monitoring your accounts and alerts – they manage the entire restoration process start to finish.
Here‘s an overview of what you can expect:
- Monitoring: The service uses advanced technology like AI and machine learning to monitor your accounts, credit reports, web activity, and more for signs of identity theft.
- Alerts: At the first sign of suspicious or fraudulent activity, you receive a real-time alert.
- Investigation: Restoration specialists investigate the alert to validate it‘s truly identity theft and not a false alarm.
- Resolution: Once identity theft is confirmed, specialists contact affected institutions like credit bureaus, banks, utility companies, etc. to resolve the issue. The thieves are restricted from accounts, charges reversed, documents corrected, and your identity fully restored.
- Insurance: Robust identity theft insurance through the service covers any out-of-pocket costs related to the restoration, including lawyers‘ fees, lost wages from time off work, and other expenses.
With an identity theft restoration service, you have a dedicated team of experts working on your behalf to reinstate your identity seamlessly.
The 3 Best Identity Theft Restoration Services of 2023
To save you research time, I compared over a dozen top-rated services to find the best of the best for 2023. Here are my top recommendations:
1. Norton LifeLock – Best Overall Identity Theft Restoration
For its unmatched combination of high-tech monitoring, stellar restoration services, and generous theft insurance, Norton LifeLock is my choice as the top overall identity theft restoration service for 2023.
I like that Norton LifeLock uses advanced AI technology to monitor over a billion data points for signs of your info across the dark web, suspicious sites, and hidden social media accounts. At the first red flag, U.S.-based restoration experts investigate and validate the threat.
According to Norton, its specialists have an average restoration time of less than 3 days once fraud is confirmed. Plus, they fully manage the recovery process so you don‘t have to make a single call or submit any documents yourself.
Norton LifeLock also offers high identity theft insurance limits up to $1 million, which covers any lawyers‘ fees, lost wages, or other out-of-pocket costs associated with restoration.
The main drawback is LifeLock‘s pricing increases substantially after the first year. But for the extensive monitoring technology, stellar restoration services, and generous insurance coverage, I believe Norton LifeLock is worth the ongoing cost for the peace of mind it provides.
- Individual plan: Starts at $7.50/month first year
- Family plan: Starts at $12.49/month first year
2. IdentityForce – Best High-Tech Monitoring
For the most advanced, high-tech monitoring capabilities I‘ve seen, IdentityForce earns my recommendation for best monitoring technology.
IdentityForce scans an incredible 1.5 billion data points across financial accounts, credit reports, web activity, payday loan applications, and more to detect identity theft threats. I like that it applies smart learning technology to adapt to new fraud tactics over time.
At the first sign of suspicious activity, you receive a real-time alert. IdentityForce‘s U.S-based specialists then kick the restoration process into high-gear, managing it from start to finish on your behalf.
IdentityForce also provides up to $1 million in identity theft insurance. My main gripe is IdentityForce‘s high monthly pricing, but in my opinion the robust monitoring and restoration support is worth the premium cost.
- Individual Plan: Starts at $9.99/month when paid monthly
- Family Plan: Starts at $19.99/month when paid monthly
3. IDShield – Best Value
For an affordable price paired with solid protection and assistance, IDShield is my choice for best value identity theft restoration service.
IDShield offers core essentials like daily credit monitoring across all three bureaus, dark web surveillance, bank transaction alerts, and more. I like that IDShield provides full credit reports quarterly so you can check for any suspicious activity.
According to IDShield, its U.S.-based restoration experts have an average resolution time of three to five days. They fully handle restoring your identity and accounts in the event of confirmed fraud.
The main drawbacks are no advanced monitoring capabilities or mobile app access. However, if you‘re looking for reliable restoration support at a budget-friendly cost, IDShield is a great option.
- Individual Plan: Starts at $8.95/month when paid monthly
- Family Plan: Starts at $18.95/month when paid monthly
What to Look for in an Identity Theft Restoration Service
When researching services, keep the following key factors in mind:
- Comprehensive monitoring – Look for monitoring across credit reports, bank/investment accounts, web activity, payday loan applications, and court records for complete protection.
- Real-time alerts – Immediate notifications when threats are detected allow for quick response.
- Fast restoration – The service should fully manage recovery and resolve issues within days.
- $1 million insurance – Coverage for all restoration costs like legal fees, lost wages, and expenses.
- 24/7 support – Access U.S-based specialists any time your identity may be compromised.
- Credit freezes – Ability to instantly freeze credit with all 3 bureaus to prevent thieves from opening new accounts.
- Web portal & mobile app – Manage your plan and restoration online and via smartphone app.
5 Tips for Picking the Best Identity Theft Restoration Service
Follow this guide when comparing providers to find the right match:
1. Decide on a monthly budget – Prices range from as little as $6/month to $30+/month. Set a budget to narrow down options.
2. Compare monitoring features – Look for comprehensive monitoring of financial accounts, credit, web, payday loans, and more based on your risks.
3. Confirm restoration assistance is included – Restoration support is key – make sure it‘s part of the package.
4. Check credit monitoring frequency – Daily monitoring is best to detect threats quickly before major financial damage.
5. Read reviews and ratings – Select a service with positive feedback from current customers.
And remember to choose an established, reputable company that protects your personal information. I recommend comparing 3-5 top services head-to-head to find your best match.
Is Identity Theft Restoration Worth the Cost?
In my opinion, yes – identity theft restoration is absolutely worth paying for if your budget allows.
Consider that according to the Federal Trade Commission, over 1.4 million Americans fell victim to identity theft and fraud last year alone. Recovering from identity theft on your own takes endless time and energy – the FTC estimates 200+ hours spent resolving issues over several months.
With a comprehensive restoration service, you have experts working on your behalf to reinstate your identity and accounts in days rather than months. Specialists do all the document gathering, phone calls, account monitoring, and legwork for you.
Plus, the right service has an insurance policy covering up to $1 million in related costs – lawyers, late fees, lost wages, etc. Without that policy, you could easily rack up thousands out-of-pocket in the recovery process.
For most people, paying a monthly fee provides tremendous value and peace of mind knowing your identity is protected and secured by professionals.
The Bottom Line
Finding the right identity theft restoration service offers immense value in today‘s risky digital landscape. With experts vigilantly monitoring your accounts, quickly responding to any fraudulent activity, fully managing restoration, and covering related costs – your identity and finances stay protected.
After extensive research, I recommend Norton LifeLock as the top provider for 2023 based on its cutting-edge monitoring, stellar restoration services, and generous identity theft insurance coverage.
But be sure to evaluate your specific risks and needs to determine the best option for your situation. Invest in identity theft restoration and you can feel confident your identity is safe, secured, and covered.