As one of the three major credit bureaus, TransUnion has one of the most popular credit monitoring services (and the one I use). Their service includes unlimited credit report and score updates, as well as up to $1,000,000 in identity theft insurance. This is usually the credit monitoring service we recommend but it ultimately depends on your personal needs.
The table below lists our top picks for credit monitoring services. If you keep reading, we’ve also included reviews that detail how each service is different in order to help you decide which service to go with.
Why Every Adult Needs Credit Monitoring
In this day and age if you aren’t monitoring your credit report on a monthly basis with a credit monitoring service, you’re playing with fire —plain and simple. I would even go as far as saying not actively monitoring your credit report is down right foolish.
Recent and ongoing hacks, such as the enormous Equifax hack that affected most of the adult population in the US, has made credit monitoring a necessity, when just a few years ago it was a “nice to have”.
Don’t Assume Your Personal Data is Private
The problem is that we can no longer assume that our personal data is safe. Rather, we need to assume that it will be stolen at some point. There is really nothing we can do personally to prevent these hacks. The companies that have a responsibility to protect our data have proved to be unable to do so.
All you can do is make sure you have a system in place so that when your (or your family’s) personal data is compromised, you’re monitoring your credit report so if a thief steals your identity or opens up credit cards in your name, you’re aware of it and can fix the situation as quickly as possible before it gets worse.
How to Pick a Credit Monitoring Service
In addition to having different prices, each credit monitoring service provides a set of features that are unique to that specific service.
Therefore, it really comes down to finding the service that best fits your individual needs. Let’s get into some of the different features found in each one of the credit monitoring services we recommend so that you can choose the right one for you.
TransUnion is actually the service I use. The best thing about this service is that you can get a copy of your TransUnion credit report as well as your credit score whenever you want (even every day). It’s also the most affordable on our list at only $9.95 per month.
- Unlimited updates to your TransUnion credit report and credit score.
- Email alerts of changes to your credit report.
- Instant email alert when someone opens a credit line in your name.
- Score simulator — See how specific credit choices affect your score.
- Unlimited access to toll-free identity theft specialists.
- Up to $1,000,000 in identity theft insurance.
Lifelock is only service on our picks list that offers the first 30 days for free. Lifelock also has more features geared towards protecting your identity than the other services. If protecting your identity, rather than checking your credit score every month, is your priority, Lifelock is probably your best bet.
Lifelock also offers three different credit monitoring products, each with different features. They are priced from $9.99/mo (least features) to $25.00/mo (tons of features). Again, it all depends on what you’re looking for.
Experian would be the best service if you’re mostly interested in your Experian credit report. I’ve found that lots of creditors seem to pull your Experian credit report over others. I don’t know why this is, but it’s definitely been a trend.
Experian is the most expensive service at $21.95, so that’s something to consider. There is a $1 7 day trial so you can try it out and see if you want to continue your subscription.
- Everyday access to your Experian credit report and FICO score.
- Daily Monitoring of your Experian credit report.
- Score Factors that show what’s positively or negatively impacting your FICO score.
I would love to hear what your experiences have been with these services. Please let me know down in the comments. Your feedback will also help other readers who are unsure which service to go with.