In order to get the most out of this guide, I suggest you do the following:
- Have an open Word document or Notepad tab handy to keep track of your information.
- Put together as much information as you have on the person you're looking for.
- Use these search tools and sites in order; I've listed them so you should be able to find information better this way.
Ready? Let's get going!
You most likely will get a lot of information here, but do not pay for information. If you see something that asks you to pay, just disregard it. You'll be able to obtain a good amount of absolutely free information here on the person you are looking for - or at least enough to keep going.
Once you have your information, copy and paste it to a Word document or Notepad file for easy access, and keep on going to the next step in this list.
For instance, merely typing the person's full name in quotations - "John Smith" - into Google's search field can potentially yield quite a few favorable results. If you know where the person lives - "John Smith" Atlanta - you'll get even more results. How about where the person works? "John Smith" "coca-cola" Atlanta.
Once you've gone as far as you can go with Google People Search, copy and paste your information onto your research file, and go on to the next step.
If you have the full name of the person you're looking for, you can use that to find them on Facebook. You can also find someone on Facebook by using their email address, if you have it. Or, you can type in the name of the high school, college, or company that the person you're looking for is affiliated with.
Type in the person's name that you're looking for in the Pipl search box, and see what you come up with. Once you have the information you're looking for, add it to your Find Someone research file (which should be filling up quite nicely by now!) and go on to the next step.
These are some of the best free public record search databases online, from obituaries to census records. Note: Depending on the state or country that you live in, you might not be able to access more personal public records, such as birth certificates, drivers' licenses, marriage certificates, etc., without A)showing physical proof of identification or B)paying a fee. Many of these resources give you a good starting point from which to begin your research.
Type in who you're looking for into ZoomInfo and you'll potentially come back with a lot of information that leads to other information: i.e., links that show you where else that person is on the Web (that's IF they have a presence online. If the person you are looking for doesn't get on the Web much, this isn't going to do you much good.).
For example,Peekyou enables you to search for usernames across a variety of social networking communities. For instance: say you would like to learn more about the person who uses the handle "I-Love-Kittens"; you can use PeekYou to see what else they might be doing on the Web under that username (most people use the same username across many different Web services, so you could potentially hit some major paydirt here!).