Most people are familiar with credit monitoring and password keepers, but when the term "identity monitoring" is mentioned, some people may become confused. Another extremely useful type of service that can be utilized by those looking to protect from identity theft, an identity monitor does much more than you may think. This type of service is extremely useful in ensuring that you name and other personal information are not misused by those looking to cause harm or ruin your reputation in order to better themselves.
What is it?
Identity monitors start with the basics: a name and Social Security number, and work from there. Addresses, places of employment, and even public records are all under surveillance, making it much less likely that a thief will be able to pull one over on their intended victim. These monitors were created to protect and watch over the little details that make up a person's life - because it's these details that give people the ability to do things like get jobs, buy homes, and get married. This isn't to say that using this service will render your information or accounts invincible, but having this type of service in place can offer the ability for people to fight back, noticing the strange activities sooner than they would have otherwise and being able to act on these observations.
How are the results viewed?
Sent back to users in a timely manner, the results that are produced by these types of monitors can be viewed on the computer or via a cell phone, tablet, or other device with internet capability. This makes the results accessible and helpful, giving users the ability to access them whenever they wish - which can be critical if there are certain changes that require attention. These results are collected and compiled in an extremely efficient manner - meant to be easily read and understood by users in order to give them the best possible chance at taking the necessary steps to fight against identity theft.
What don't these services do?
Unfortunately, an identity monitor cannot stop theft, and it cannot stop fraud. These services cannot stop or shut down accounts that are opened under your name, or claims that are made on your behalf - they simply give users the ability and the opportunity to take note of these changes and then act. The actions of users are what will result putting an end of this fraudulent use. Using an identity monitor makes it much less likely that people will be victims for long periods of time, and the results make it possible to dispute specific uses, transactions, applications and account creation - but it cannot work without user participation after these things are caught and notated.
Identity monitors were created in order to help keep the information of people under watch, not the finances. Although this can certainly alert people if someone tries to change certain information to your bank accounts, it does not report back specific financial information in the way that a credit monitor would - but it is just as useful.