LifeLock is an online portal where you subscribe to have your personal data protected. You provide them with all your relevant data, then you sit back and wait to find out if someone is using that data to fraudulently open credit card accounts or obtain ID in your name.
It’s easy to sign up, but you will need some detailed information including your credit card numbers, bank account routing information, mother’s maiden name, current and former addresses, and insurance card information. It’s a bit daunting and it feels oddly wrong to be putting all this information in one place. But the purpose is twofold – first to give LifeLock the information they need to search for chinks in your data armor and second, so you can access that information should you lose your cards or be away from home and need the information.
Is it worth it?
The cost for the basic LifeLock plan is $99 a year (that’s $8.29 a month). The basic plan provides the following services: Identity threat detection and alerts, lost wallet protection, address change verification, monitoring of known criminal sites for illegal trading or selling of your information, and reduction in the pre-approved credit offers you receive.
LifeLock Identity Alerts
Your alerts can be found within your account, emailed if you selected that option, or you can have them sent to your smart phone. Generally they let you know that all is well and in the case of my last alert, that they notified credit card companies that we no longer want unsolicited credit card offers mailed to us.
This is part of their basic service and given a choice I would have asked them not to do this one our behalf. We have a locked mail box and we shred offers we’re not interested in, but we like to see what is available and shop for a better card/rate. Still, I understand that for most people it’s one way thieves are able to open up credit accounts.
LifeLock® only protects one family member for the price. That means to keep a watch on your credit and your identities, you’ll need to cover both yourself and your husband so that doubles the cost. It’s too bad there’s not some kind of discount – they’re already monitoring your address and bank account and in our case they happen to be the same.
While more and more online companies are beefing up their online security, LifeLock gives you one central location that’s looking out for your best interest. Occasionally companies have resisted advertising a breach in their security or they’ve mailed notifications that sometimes were received weeks after the information was leaked. LifeLock’s job is to protect you.
There is a wealth of information available on their site and through the alerts to help you learn more about how your identity can be stolen. I found this to be a fabulous resource and one I’ll sharing with others.