While a web browser search or a quick trawl through a social media site might prove effective and put on the right trail to finding that lost someone, a more effective way of finding people you’ve lost touch with is by using the best people search engine.
Although these will cost you a few dollars, they can access information than no web browser will uncover for you. By delving into court records and dark web sites, the best people searches can reveal a lot more than just a person’s location.
If you don’t want to read the whole article, here’s our summary of the best people search engines:
- BeenVerified – Accurate, easy-to-read reports delivered in minutes
- PeopleLooker – Great for beginners with mobile apps for reverse phone and email lookups
- TruthFinder – Offers free basic reports, accurate results, and fast turnaround times
- Instant Checkmate – An expensive service but one that offers detailed and accurate reports
- Intelius – Cheap options available for basic reports, though some inconsistencies in terms of accuracy
- US Search – Inconsistent in terms of accuracy but offers cheap, downloadable reports
Our pick for the Best People Search Engine: BeenVerified
Best People Search Sites | Find People Easily with The Best People Search Engine
BeenVerified offers a range of reports, of which its people search service is just one. It is, nevertheless, a powerful tool that scours billions of data points to produce an easy-to-read report containing the following:
- Basic information – includes name, current address, age, phone numbers, and email addresses
- Known associates – reveals possible family members, roommates, and work colleagues
- Professional history – including academic achievements and work history
- Criminal and Civil – lists all crimes and misdemeanors, litigation history, charges and arrests
- Social media – compiles information from blogs and social media sites to create a picture of the individual’s online identity
- Property Ownership Records – Including ownership history records, name of tenants, property specifications, tax information, and assessments
BeenVerified is recognized for its accuracy and, when it comes to employment history, it is often the most precise and detailed. All the best people search sites have their strengths and weaknesses, and BeenVerified excels when it comes to providing contact information and recent phone numbers. It struggles a little when it comes to producing accurate marriage and divorce records, however, so remember to take those results with a pinch of salt.
The only real downside to BeenVerified is that its pricing tiers don’t accommodate one-off reports, so users have no choice but to sign up for a monthly subscription which, at $22.86 per month, is quite pricey if you just want to track down the boy you sat next to at primary school, for example.
If you’ve got a host of long-lost friends and relatives you want to track down, BeenVerified’s three-month subscription offers better value for money and an unlimited number of reports. You can also get notifications, should anything in that report change.
BeenVerified provides a fast turnaround time, accurate results, and better chances of finding the John Smith you fell in love with during your junior year at college as opposed to one of the other 44,934 John Smiths currently living in the US, so why not sign up with BeenVerified today? If you’re anxious about committing to a one-month subscription, however, check out our full review here before taking the plunge.
TruthFinder offers some advanced search options that the other services in our list of the best people search engines don’t include. For starters, TruthFinder is one of the few online background check services that offers a limited free people search option.
It is a little frustrating that you must enter a city, as well as the person’s first and last names as not all of us, have access to that information, but a close guess is enough to limit the search field and produce more accurate results.
A basic free people search isn’t going to tell you much, but it will give you an idea of whether you’re on the right track. Armed with the person’s age and most recent location, a full background check will produce more details and more accurate results.
A people search with TruthFinder will produce similar results to both PeopleLooker and BeenVerified, revealing basic contact information, criminal history, known associate and possible relatives, and a social media summary. There’s not so much detail when it comes to employment history, but TruthFinder will inform you if the person you’re looking for “appears on a government watch list supplied by the DOJ, FBI, CIA, Interpol, or another government agency” and provides a report quality score so you have an idea of the accuracy of your report before you pay for it.
TruthFinder’s people search option isn’t quite as slick or speedy as PeopleLooker’s and takes around 10 minutes to complete, but it’s worth the wait if it means finding your lost godchild or rekindling a lost love. One of the benefits of TruthFinder is that, even after you’ve received your initial people search report, TruthFinder will keep on searching for new data on your subject and alert you should any new information come to light.
While not the cheapest of our best people finder services, TruthFinder is both detailed and accurate and has even helped some customers track down children they gave up for adoption over 30 years ago. If you like the sound of this and believe it offers the best people search engine for your needs, sign up with TruthFinder today. Alternatively, check out our full review for more information.
PeopleLooker is simple to use, and, by keeping search criteria to a minimum and providing its users with a slick search engine interface, has established itself as one of the best people search sites for 2020. Results are ready within minutes and a PeopleLooker people search will reveal the following:
- Current and previous phone numbers and email addresses
- Home address and previous locations
- Employment and education history
- Social media profiles, photos, and posts
- Arrests and traffic violations
- Known associates and neighbors
PeopleLooker is more mobile-focused than BeenVerified, a feature that will appeal to those constantly on the go. For those without the latest smartphone, however, the PeopleLooker experience is somewhat limited and won’t have access to reverse phone lookup or reverse email lookup features.
Although PeopleLooker is one of the best people search engines thanks to its user-friendly interface, any users experiencing difficulties with the service can get customer support at any time of day or night by using the online live chat service.
Like BeenVerified, PeopleLooker has no option for those wanting just a single background check report and, instead, users must choose between a one-month subscription and the more cost-effective three-month option. For those organizing a school reunion, this is great, but for those only wanting to check out a new next-door neighbor, it’s less convenient.
PeopleLooker is nonetheless one of the easier people search engines to use and provides the highest standard of customer care. Its mobile apps are also a huge plus for those who are constantly on the go. Furthermore, PeopleLooker charges less for its services than many other best people finders and has one of the fastest turnaround times, so if you’re looking for fast results that don’t cost you an arm and a leg, sign up with PeopleLooker today. For more information about its reports, data sources, and pricing tiers, check out our full review here.
Instant Checkmate is one of the best people search sites because it allows users to add more information about the individual they’re searching for. While most people search engines simply want the first and last names and the state or city you think the person is currently living in, with Instant Checkmate, you can enter details about the person’s physical appearance to make them easier to locate. By providing information about a person’s ethnicity, hair and eye color, and height and weight, it’s easier for Instant Checkmate to narrow the search and dismiss individuals that don’t match.
A people search conducted by Instant Checkmate will produce the same results as those discussed above, but will also include professional licenses held by the individual, a full employment history, and even their average net worth. Possibly the best people search engine for gold-diggers across America, Instant Checkmate’s reports will also include information about the estimated value of the individual’s home.
Instant Checkmate isn’t the fastest people search option, but it does produce some of the most accurate results and includes information in its reports that the competition doesn’t. For instance, an Instant Checkmate people search will include marriage and divorce records and previous addresses going back 15 years.
Well-designed reports make results easily accessible and display the information chronologically so it’s easier to follow. Instant Checkmate is, without a doubt, one of the best people search sites in terms of both detail and accuracy, but the price tag is similarly indicative of its superiority.
Like TruthFinder, Instant Checkmate gives you an idea of the accuracy and extent of your report before you download it so, if your report is only scoring 54%, you may decide not to shell out the $34.78 it costs for a one-month subscription.
Aside from the hefty price tag, this is one of the best people finders so why not sign up with Instant Checkmate today and start organizing that school reunion? Not convinced that this is the best people search site for you? Find out more by reading our full review here.
Intelius takes a different approach to its reports and displays basic information about addresses and possible associates in a unique spider graph. This means you can see all the personal and professional relationships that a person has in an interactive relationship map.
Another reason we rate Intelius as one of the best people finders is that it allows users to purchase an individual report, rather than having to commit to a monthly subscription. That means you could get the same results from Intelius for around $26 less than you’d pay for a monthly subscription with Instant Checkmate.
Intelius does let the side down a little when it comes to accuracy and struggles to produce the same precision in its reports as the likes of Instant Checkmate or BeenVerified. If you’re searching for someone with an uncommon name, however, you’re likely to get more accurate results than if you’re searching for yet another James Smith or Maria Garcia.
When it comes to legal findings, Intelius is very accurate, but it tends to fall short when listing past addresses, marriages, and divorces. A single people search report costs just under a dollar but that will only give you access to basic information such as:
- Full name, age, and DOB
- Phone numbers and addresses
- Known relatives
- Social media profiles and email addresses
- Employment and education history
That’s really not bad and should be more than adequate to find your old college roommate (In the case of a landlord – renter relationship, there are dedicated tenant background check services) or best friend from high school. A public records report costs $1.95 and will include the basics as well as current marital status and past marriages and divorces. When it comes to a full background report, however, Intelius’s pricing is comparable with our other best people search engines, at $39.95 for a one-off report or $29.95 for a one-month subscription.
Intelius is one of the most cost-effective and best people search sites, especially for those just wanting a one-off report so, if that sounds like you, sign up with Intelius today, otherwise check out our full review here.
#6 US Search
If you’re looking for an affordable and comprehensive background check report, US Search offers one of the best people finder services in terms of pricing, accuracy, usability, and the detail of its reports. A word of warning, however – US Search isn’t the best when it comes to email addresses and phone numbers so, if you’re set on getting back in touch with a long-lost friend, we’d recommend BeenVerified as a more reliable option.
US Search has its perks, however, and is one of the few people search sites that lets users download one-off reports, rather than just view them online. Although some may prefer the chronological layout offered by the likes of Instant Checkmate, US Search divides the report into sections, making it easier to pull out the bits of information that interest you the most.
While you won’t get 100% accuracy from a US Search report, it is better at providing accurate information about a person’s address than some of its rivals, but struggles to reproduce that same level of accuracy when it comes to email addresses and phone numbers.
The US Search website isn’t the most user-friendly, but it offers a much wider range of pricing options than many of its rivals. With US Search, you can either purchase a basic people search report for $2.45 or pay just $1.45 and get a two-day free trial of its unlimited Omnisearch option. If the service blows you away, you can carry on using it for just $19.95 per month.
Although some information is only available in certain states, and reports aren’t obtainable for those currently living abroad, by offering in-depth reports at competitive prices, US Search manages to make it into our list of the best people search sites for 2020. Sign up with US Search today and find that uncle you haven’t seen in 40 years, or bide your time and find out more about the service by reading our full review here.
Why Pay for the Best People Finder?
There are lots of ways to search for a lost friend for free, including using web search engines like Google to search for names, email addresses, or even photographs of an individual. You can also use a free background check service like White Pages or TruePeopleSearch but you won’t be able to glean much from the results without parting with a few dollars.
A little like TruthFinder, White Pages produces a basic report for free, but this will only give you one landline number and the person’s current address. If you want to unlock the full report, you’ll have to hand over some cold, hard cash, just as you would for the best people search engines. In other words, most free services are no cheaper than the more accurate services offered by the best people search sites.
What Do People Use the Best People Search Sites For?
There are certain restrictions on what you can and can’t use a background check service or people search site for. Legally, any service offering to check the history of an individual for the purposes of employment, renting accommodation, or providing financial loans must use an authorized consumer reporting agency. In other words, using even the best people search engines to check out a potential babysitter or someone you’re planning on renting an apartment to isn’t legal. To find out more about the do’s and don’ts of background check services, click here.
The best people finders are often used to:
- Reconnect with an old friend
- Find a family member
- Locate a professional acquaintance
- Check out an online date
- Find out more about new neighbors
- Screen a new member of your school carpool
- Perform a people search on yourself and find out what information others could access about you
Another surprisingly popular use for the best people finders is to check out the credentials of someone they’re going to for a professional service. A report by Pew Research Center indicated that finding former friends was the most common use of the best people search engines, with checking out a professional service provider coming a close second. This does seem a little odd as there are free services, like state medical boards, where you can check the legitimacy of that professional for free
What To Do After a Successful People Search
So, you’ve used the best people finder service you could find and now have your old school friend’s current phone number, email address, and home address. Now, what do you do? Proceed with caution – after all, you don’t want to scare the person away or have them accuse you of stalking before you get the opportunity to reconnect.
- Make sure you stay on the right side of the law and give yourself the best chance of rekindling an old relationship by following these simple rules:
- Make your first contact short, sweet, and non-invasive. Rather than sending a lengthy email, try making contact on social media by posting a friend request, or send a short message via SMS or WhatsApp
- Resist phoning the person – many people won’t return calls from unknown numbers while others may feel a call is an invasion of their privacy
- Keep your messages short, to begin with – they may have been your friend 20 years ago, but people change, and they may not be as interested in your romantic exploits now as they were then
- Never show up in person – even if you were close once, showing up at someone’s home or workplace unexpectedly is bordering on creepy. Your old friend may even have been stalked in the past, making such a move particularly intimidating.
- Be patient and don’t’ expect the person to respond to your initial contact straightaway. For all you know, they could be doing through a tough time at work or struggling with a personal relationship. Give it time and, if you don’t receive a response, try again a few months later. If the individual is still unforthcoming, it may be time to leave them behind and focus on making new friends instead.
You can find people easily using online background check services, but the best people search engines will give you more details and more accurate information, which is why it’s worth considering them regardless of cost.
Not only should you look for a legitimate service that adheres to the FCRA regulations but finding one that guarantees a certain level of accuracy, accesses a wide range of data sources, and sends notifications when new information becomes available means more accurate results and a better chance of tracking down the person you’re looking for.
It’s important to be aware that you are accessing someone’s personal information and, even if your motives are completely innocent, not everyone is going to welcome you digging around in their past. Once you’ve successfully completed a people search using one of our recommended services, you need to tread carefully and not assume that the subject of your people search is as keen to reignite that relationship as you are. Some people are very sensitive about their privacy and may be offended that you even consider using a people search site in the first place.
The best people search engines offer a useful way of checking out new people in your life and giving you peace of mind when establishing new relationships. They are also a great way of finding people you’ve lost touch with but it’s important to use the information you get from your report with a certain amount of caution and sensitivity.
Still can’t decide? Read our detailed BeenVerified vs Truthfinder Comparison.