Identity Guard vs Complete ID

Our pick is Identity Guard! Read below to find out why.

Aliza Vigderman
Gabe TurnerChief Editor
Last Updated on Aug 18, 2021
By Aliza Vigderman & Gabe Turner on Aug 18, 2021
Identity Guard vs Complete ID

Identity Guard®

  • Identity theft protection powered by IBM® Watson™ AI
  • Impressive $1 million in identity theft insurance
  • Multiple service levels, from basic to advanced
Editor's Rating

Complete ID

  • A part of Experian
  • Up to $1 million in insurance coverage
  • Tailored to Costco members
Editor's Rating

Identity Guard® and Complete ID are two identity-theft monitoring and recovery solutions. If you want to protect your personal information online, you may consider subscribing to one of these products. However, it can be challenging to clearly understand the differences, especially if you aren’t well-versed in identity protection.

While the two services offer some similar features, there are also some significant differences. Read on to learn more about each service’s features and costs.

Identity Monitoring

Identity Guard

Identity Guard provides various identity monitoring services powered by IBM® Watson™. For example, the service will scan the internet and the dark web for your information. In particular, it will look for your social security number and address appearing on mailing lists. Identity Guard will also attempt to have your information removed from websites deemed suspicious.

Complete ID

Complete ID also offers dark web surveillance and similarly looks for your information on suspicious websites. This includes major information like your social security number as well as your contact information, medical information and other similar personal details. Complete ID can check to see if your billing address or USPS primary address has been changed.


Overall, Complete ID offers a lot of tools for scanning whereas Identity Guard relies on the artificial intelligence of Watson™ to find new possible threats. Both look at the dark web and any address changes. Complete ID also checks criminal records for your name. However, Identity Guard provides some preventative tools, such as anti-fishing and a risk management report.

Financial Monitoring

Identity Guard

The service will track changes to your bank account activity of credit card spending habits. Identity Guard will send an alert if a large purchase is made or any other unusual transaction occurs. Additionally, the service will notify you if a new bank account, credit card or other financial account is opened in your name. It will monitor for account takeovers to help you stop them before it’s too late.

Complete ID

Complete ID also monitors for new bank accounts, account takeovers, new credit cards and other unauthorized financial activity. It does not have a specific service for financial monitoring, however.


Identity Guard is the clear choice for financial monitoring. While Complete ID does offer some protection, it is largely indirect through its credit monitoring service. For monitoring that will pick up unusual transactions, choose Identity Guard.

Credit Monitoring

Identity Guard

With three-bureau credit monitoring, Identity Guard will check for any unusual changes that pop up on your report. This complements the financial monitoring features and helps to monitor whether new accounts are being opened. Identity Guard also provides monthly credit scores and annual credit reports from all three bureaus.

Complete ID

Complete ID also offers credit monitoring. The service is backed by Experian, so the monitoring and insight into credit are particularly good. Complete ID also provides a credit report every year and monthly credit scores from Experian.


Both services offer similar features in terms of credit monitoring. However, Complete ID has a slight edge because it is backed by Experian.

Identity Restoration

Identity Guard

Although Identity Guard is primarily intended as a preventative service, it does provide some identity restoration services. You will receive a U.S.-based case manager to help with the restoration process.

Complete ID

The identity restoration services for Complete ID are similar. A specialist will guide you through the process and offer advice.


The two services are similar in what they offer for identity restoration. Complete ID may have a little extra insight, thanks to working with Experian.


Both services offer nearly identical insurance. With your plan, you will receive a $1 million policy to cover losses sustained from identity theft. This can be used for hiring attorneys, reimbursing lost funds, and other similar expenses.

Cost Comparison

Identity Guard

Identity Guard has three plans to choose from and the option between individual coverage and family coverage. These are the prices when billed annually:

  • Value: $7.50 per month for an individual and $12.50 per month for a family
  • Total: $16.67 per month for an individual and $25 per month for a family
  • Premier: $20.87 per month for an individual and $29.17 per month for a family

Total adds credit monitoring and some extra financial monitoring services. Premier includes everything from total plus the social insight report and credit report.

Complete ID

Complete ID has only a single plan including every feature listed above. However, you need a Costco Membership to get a plan. The pricing is $8.99 per month for Executive Members and $13.00 per month for Business and Gold Star Members. Child monitoring is an extra $2.99 per month for Executive and $3.99 per month for other members.


Identity Guard Complete ID
Dark Web Monitoring Yes Yes
Financial Account Monitoring Transactions and New Accounts New Accounts
Credit Monitoring Yes Yes
Criminal Report Monitoring No Yes
Restoration Services Dedicated Case Manager Specialist Hotline
Insurance $1 million $1 million
Starting Price $7.50/mo $8.99/mo

Both services offer similar features. However, Identity Guard has the added benefit of IBM® Watson™. For anyone with an active Costco membership, the pricing of Complete ID is almost unbeatable.

Disclaimer: This content is not provided or commissioned by the companies referenced in this article. Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the companies mentioned. We may be compensated through advertiser affiliate programs.