MyFICO Identity Theft Protection
Founded in 2001, MyFICO is a comprehensive way to monitor your credit, detect threats to your identity and in the unfortunate event you have your information compromised, it offers a restoration feature to assist you in this. Overall, its monitoring service is an excellent way to stay abreast of any changes in your credit reports to help you stay on top of your finances.
MyFICO offers three different levels of monitoring services/packages available, depending on your needs and budgetary goals. Here is a closer look at all three of them:
FICO Essentials 1B
With this feature, you will receive access to 6 FICO score versions that many lenders in the mortgage, credit card and auto financing market use. This is an invaluable way to see how lenders view you as a prospective client. In addition to this feature, you'll have access to your monthly Equifax credit reports, lost wallet protection, 24/7 full-service identity restoration and $1 million in identity theft insurance. You receive all these features for $219 annually, or $19.95 a month.
FICO Ultimate 3B
With this coverage, you have access to 19 FICO score versions, giving you a fuller look at how lenders in each market view you. Along with this, you'll receive quarterly access to your three-bureau credit reports to help you stay up to date with any changes that might take place. Moreover, this package also has identity theft monitoring to go along with the identity restoration and $1 million in identity theft insurance protection, providing you with a better plan that is more proactive in catching theft as it occurs. For this plan, you pay more annually, as it is $329 a year, or $29.95 monthly, but you receive vital features such as identity theft monitoring.
FICO Score 3B Report
This is the most comprehensive package in that it includes immediate access to 19 FICO score versions and your current three-bureau report. This means unlike the other plans where you must wait quarterly or monthly, you can access all your reports now to see if there are any inaccuracies or if someone has opened credit accounts in your name, thus helping you to take a more proactive stand in protecting your identity. To receive access to these features, the cost is $59.85.
How it Works
The sign up is easy to do. In many ways, it's similar to buying products online. Once you select which package you want, you will go to the checkout page; this is where you create an account by providing basic information including your social security number and birth date for the purposes of them accessing your FICO score. Rest assured, the process is simple to do and secure.
After your initial sign-up process is complete FICO Identity Ultimate will do a complete scan of all the information associated with your identity including credit cards, medical ID numbers, and bank accounts. Their database has millions of data points to rifle including illegal/black market websites, chat rooms, blogs, and credit bureaus. The results that are retrieved from this initial comprehensive scan will act as the foundation for your identity profile.
You'll receive an alert within 24 hours if they detect any changes to your FICO Score, the creation or change of accounts, changes to your name, address, or phone as well as inquiries, public records, and collections.
This service doesn't monitor as many personal data areas as some of the other providers on the list. They don't specifically mention sex offender registries, loan/lease information or driver's license numbers. They also aren't generous in their additional features. You won't get a mail list removal or family coverage with this provider.
Tools with MyFICO
MyFICO is rich in the amount of educational resources available to you. On its website, it offers excellent features on repairing your credit by showing how secured credit cards can help you build your score through smart borrowing behaviors. Along with this, they have affiliate links to products offered like secured credit cards where you can find out more and if interested, apply to use one.
Where they really excel is in FICO credit education. You can learn all about the components that make up your FICO score such as your payment history, credit inquiries and how many accounts you currently have in collections. They also touch on how lenders use scores, how to dispute an error you identify on one of your reports and fair debt collection practices, which can protect you as a consumer against some of the less reputable practices debt collection companies might try to do. Information such as this is important to know because it can help you identify inconsistencies sooner, which might be the result of identity theft.
Another great feature MyFICO has is the community forums on its website. This is an excellent way for you to connect with other people who are just as interested in improving their finances and protecting their identity as you are. On the forums, you can learn more about general credit topics, stay abreast of any developments on credit in the news and gain a better understanding of your FICO score.
Customer Service with MyFICO
MyFICO has a support center where you can find answers to your questions using its search feature. If you prefer to speak to a member of their staff, you can contact them during normal banking hours Monday through Saturday in Pacific Time. There is also an email feature where you can send them a message and they will respond to you within two business days. Overall, MyFico has multiple ways in which you can have your questions addressed quickly.
MyFICO still excels in offering identity protection and credit monitoring. You get lost wallet protection, $1 million guarantee and a service warranty protection. MyFICO has proven itself as a reputable company with above average offerings. Along with great services, arguably what sets it apart from others is its vast array of educational resources, where you can learn more about everything from identity theft protection to building your credit.