What’s that you ask…which free credit score site is the best? Well, the answer to that question depends on many things, including what your specific wants and needs are.
There are so many different sites out there offering free credit scores these days, it’s hard to know which ones are definitely worth checking out, and which ones aren’t even worth the time it takes to mention their name.
Most of them are the same service re-branded by different companies to appear unique, which is really just a clever marketing ploy to make more money. We’re not going to talk about those right now, we’re here to discuss the “best of breed” credit monitoring services, the ones that provide the best value, most features and benefits, basically the ones that are worthy of recommending to others.
Most of these services cater to a certain need such as identity theft protection, or credit score monitoring. This means the first step you need to take is to decide what your needs are, then we can direct you to the service that fits you best.
Best Free Credit Score/Identity Theft Protection Service
We believe the best overall service for the free credit score with identity theft protection is IDENTITY GUARD® Total Protection. Why? Well, first off they give you all 3 free credit scores, 3-bureau credit report monitoring (with e-mail alerts of key changes), and extensive identity theft protection, all with a free 30 day trial.
As a member, you can get your updated credit scores every quarter, at no extra charge. They will also scan internet black markets for signs of fraud, and immediately notify you if any suspicious activity is detected. They offer free internet security software for you to use if you wish, with free updates as long as you are a member.
This service provides free credit scores, but its central focus is identity theft protection. For more info on Identity Guard, read our full Identity Guard review here.
Best Free Credit Score/Credit Score Monitoring Service
In this category, FreeCreditScore.com stands out as the go-to site. FreeCreditScore.com’s service has a focus on frequent credit score updates, and score monitoring. With them, you get your free credit score upon sign-up, with a 7 day free trial, along with 3-bureau credit report monitoring with alerts. You can view your updated Experian PLUS Score twice per month, much more frequent than most of the other credit score services.
They have great tools to track and monitor your score, and how it changes over time. You can set up alerts for when your score reaches a certain number, they will also give you helpful tips on what actions are best to take when trying to improve your score.
This service is mainly focused on credit score monitoring/tracking. For more info on FreeCreditScore.com, read our full FreeCreditScore.com review here.
Best Free Credit Score/FICO Score Monitoring Service
If you are looking to specifically check and monitor your FICO credit score, MyFICO Score Watch is your best bet. With Score Watch, at sign-up you get your free FICO credit score, something the other services listed here do not offer, along with your 10 day free trial. Your FICO score is the one most lenders will look at, although the other scores are usually very similar, this is the one lenders typically rely on.
MyFICO Score Watch has great credit score monitoring tools, similar to FreeCreditScore.com. It allows you to set alerts to let you know when your score reaches a certain number, great for trying to improve your credit score. With this service you will receive updates to your score whenever something in your credit report changes.
As great as it is at tracking and monitoring changes to your credit score, it does little else. For more info on MyFICO Score Watch, read our full MyFICO Score Watch review here.
Give your credit and identity the one-two punch
Why not have the best of both worlds? Top notch credit score monitoring with MyFICO Score Watch, and top notch identity theft protection with ProtectMyID.com (ProtectMyID.com is our favorite for low cost 3-bureau credit monitoring, and extensive ID theft protection features). Two of the top rated services for nearly the price of one!
If this sounds like something you might be interested in, we invite you to try both services and see if they are for you. If not, you can always cancel before the monthly charges start kicking in.
Keep in mind that while MyFICO.com Score Watch has a 10 day free trial, ProtectMyID.com does not (it costs $1 for a 30 day trial there). However, even if you decide to cancel during your 30 day trial, you’re only out a buck, not a bad deal for such a great service.