Find 100% True Free People Search
The extent of the effort made by scammers using the word 'free' as click bait (leading to paid search services) is as annoying to people seekers as mosquitos are to caribou. One way to find true free search and avoid chasing down allies that lead to paid search services (in the USA and internationally) is to look for websites claiming 'free people search no credit card required' or 'no charge'.
The Best Free People Finders
These two best and largest international people finders are completely free to search. Both provide advanced people search (in the United States and globally) beyond names, addresses, ages and phone numbers.
Google people-search results are fast 'near matches' returning (for example) one billion five hundred sixty million webpages for John Smith meaning that many websites have either of those names on at least one page. Searching "John Smith" in quotes will return only sites with that exact name, acting as a 'filter' eliminating all sites that don't have that, reducing the number of sites to twenty-eight million five hundred thousand. "Captain John Smith' narrows the number of sites further to eighty hundred fifty-four thousand. Adding a middle initial returns only 26 results.
Literally anything and everything that has been placed in a database about someone could be revealed in Google free-people-search results including images, videos, news and shopping.
Facebook's free people finder is a similar totally-free site. It doesn't show the number of matches but shows pictures of people where available. Search returns can be advanced by including known data about the target like schools attended, past or suspected locations, vocations and events.
Online People Search Secrets
A 'secret' way to search for people is to use the following in the browser's address bar: site:people.com "Online True People Search" using quotes or not, replacing 'people.com' with the domain name of the site and substituting for the search phrase.
This technique may be a way to extract data about people that may not come up using the search function provided on searchable websites, mostly because the search host may not find the page relevant enough to rank highly for the search parameters entered.
Application: A people-search site displays some limited information about a person, confirming that there is information on the site about the person. Applying the 'secret search' might lead to additional details spanning more pages than just the one presented in search results. Currently search results may only display one page per website as to all pages of a website - to avoid one site from dominating the list of matches found.
Another clandestine way to search for people online is to look for information about website owners. Copy the 'domain name' (like people.com) to the clipboard and paste it into the search field at whois.com/whois which will present a page of information about people who are related to the site (including the hosting company). Over the years people have caught on to hiding this information by using 'private domain registrations' but this method will produce results occasionally.
Another search for people that is little known is a 'reverse image search' submitting a photo of a person to some of the major search services to look for possible matches. (The photograph can be new or old, of people or of things.) This is relatively new search technology (facial and character recognition) so in its infancy has a long way to grow but it's also entertaining to see images of people that search engines think 'look like you'. Visit one of the major search sites and look for an option to search by image then point to a picture or upload one from a device.
It's also possible to search a national database for stolen merchandise. People don't have direct access to the site (LeadsOnline) but every police officer does so to find stolen items and possibly track down the people who stole them, start by contacting local law authorities, file a report and let the law conduct the search.
International People Search Engines
Regional search engines focusing on local people may have more details about people than international search engines that don't delve deeply into national or foreign databases. (Search engines 'crawl' a website very quickly (seconds). The delve is usually shallow so 'deep web pages' discovered by local search robots may not be found by the mega searchers.)
Area search services are available internationally if local governments or search services haven't blocked Internet access. (Google for example blocks access to China, North Korea and others. China blocks Google.) All information recorded in government websites can be located and indexed by search engines if the latter hasn't been restricted, so people who registered to vote, people who have been arrested or imprisoned, people who work for the government - all may have been found by search facilities.
A way to find search engines targeting geographic areas is to search for them using the region's name and associated terms like 'people search USA'. Here again, when looking for free search results exclusively, scroll down in the list of search results to bypass the paid advertisements and look for titles and descriptions of websites claiming to provide 'free people search' for the country in question.
People Search App
'App' of course is an abbreviation for 'application' suggesting 'software'. At one time there was an app named 'WebSeekPro' which installed on computers, searched multiple people-search websites and arranged findings on one screen. That app appears to have been discontinued.
Searching for 'people search app' returns the usual attempts by website owners to attract traffic to their websites but it appears there are no apps which are true 'software' that can be purchased, installed on a device and used for unlimited search to locate people.
Search for Bad Guys and Inmates
An obvious place to lookup bad people is in the halls of Congress:
- The U.S.House of Representatives maintains the website house.gov where searches can be conducted for finding people representing state congressional districts, including leadership and committees as well as a site map. This site does not publish peoples' email addresses and will not forward messages sent to the webmaster.
- The U.S. Senate provides search services at senate.gov via a search field and via drill down through categories named Senators, Committees, Legislation and Records, Art and History and Reference.
- At the state, country and municipal levels, similar websites can be found using the locality names, agencies and people sought.
There are several places online where records are stored of people who are convicted criminals. When choosing a website in search results, finding websites with .gov (government extensions) will assure free people searching:
- For example, bop.gov (stands for Federal Bureau of Prisons) provides a link on its home page to 'Inmates' (inmateloc/) - people who are incarcerated for committing federal crimes. There are options for finding and visiting detainees and procedures for communicating with them. Knowing the breakdown of inmate populations (general, female, juvenile, sex, tribal and treaty transfers) may aid in finding specific people.
- Searching for people locked up at state, county and city facilities can start with a search for 'inmates' followed in the search parameter by the name of the jurisdiction.
- All states have some form of 'Board of Pardons and Parols' searchable website where information on released convicts can be found. Search using the name of the state with 'parolees'.
- Male military prisoners are behind bars at the only max-security facility in the Department of Defense: the U.S. Disciplinary Barracks (USDB) at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.
- Female convicts serve their time at the Naval Consolidated Brigatine in San Diego, California.
- People who have committed acts of treason against the United States served time at Guantanamo Bay detention camp in Cuba - Gitmo (Government's Incarceration for Terrorist Military Operatives).
People Search Offline
Before computer and the Internet people looking for people and information about them had to slog on over to places offline that stored public records. Not every bit of information about people has been placed in searchable archives and not all archives are open to public search. Many remain today:
- Churches have logs open to public search of congregation members, visitors, births, baptisms, marriages and deaths often dating back to the inception of the church (barring physical parchment loss or destruction).
- County-clerk offices house searchable documents of public records: bonds, deeds, assumed-name, birth, marriage and death certificates and livestock brands.
- Courts record people who were defendants, jurors, plaintiffs, victims and witnesses in civil and criminal proceedings. These docs are available for public search.
- Discharge records contain information about people who served in the armed forces.
- DMV records hold ownership of vehicles belonging to people and businesses.
- Elections administrators keeps track of voter registrations and place the data online for search.
- High school year books contain unique personal information perhaps not searchable elsewhere. They also are a wealth of information about 'known associates' (fellow students) who may know the current whereabouts of people they knew in school.
- Libraries of course can be the largest stores of information about people, searchable through the old catalog system.
- Schools and universities have scrolls of students and teachers which often including contact information that existed at the time of attendance or tenure.
- Searchable muster rolls have information about Civil-War people.
- Newspaper articles about people are stored from the beginning of paper print and much of it has not been converted to online searchable form.
- Parks and wildlife departments register people for hunting and fishing licenses and outdoor permits.
- Pauper scrolls are of people who are indigent and receiving public aid. Their names and limited information can be searched.
- Police blotters are desk sergeants' histories of people arrested or brought in for questioning.
- Tax assessors record property ownership and issue beer-wine permits.
Basically people who have gone about living their daily lives have been recorded in multiple databases, often without their knowledge, consent or awareness. At least in developed countries it's nearly impossible not to have people information about everyone committed to annals of time and 'findable' via online search.
Advanced People Search Resources
Anywhere and everywhere people volunteer their personal information or put themselves in positions or situations that cause facts (or allegations) about them to be recorded are advanced-search resources for finding people and information about them:
- Dating sites - While people mostly use fake names when signing up at meet-up sites, they still spill the beans about their personal lives which leaves a trail that can follow back to them. One method for backtracking on sites like these is to enter search criteria for location, the name of a school, branch of the military and so on. While not always, people include pictures of themselves in their profiles, so working backward, images would be ways of reverse search and positive identification. If the website does not provide a people-search function, search the site using this format: 'site:meetpeople.com Clarksville' which should present any person in the database with the name of the town associated with his/her profile. (Replace 'meetpeople' with the domain name of the site and change the name of the city.)
- People Directories are everywhere. They contain lists of people and often include contact information, current employers, positions and duties. Dun and Bradstreet and the Better Business Bureau hold records of business names and owners, addresses, officers and often comments (made by other people) about the nature and reputations of the firms. Such sites are open to the public for search.
- Review sites are a hoard of information about people and their work. There are hundreds of websites like Yelp and Yellow Pages which are online versions of searchable telephone directories of people and their establishments.
- Looking for people who own websites? Search for 'whois' to find the site and enter the domain names of the websites. If the domain hasn't been 'privately registered' information about the website owner (and the hosting company) will be provided.
- Hospitals have been at work for a number of years transferring written birth and death records to search form. Their databases can be a wealth of information because people can't change their names on birth certificates and most people pass away under the same name they came in with, not to mention that older and larger stores of medical records can go way back and number in the billions - mostly searchable.
- People can sometimes be found by searching for their comments in forums and blog posts but again usually under aliases which isn't necessarily a dead end in that if past usernames are known, people may have used the same ones on multiple websites. If people did, one or more search engines has likely found and stored them so searching by username could pull up surprising results.
- Volunteers at fund raisers, charity events and political campaigns go on public record usually whether they like it or not, making them 'findable'. The particular venue upon which they appear may not offer any contact information but searching websites like this can lead to additional information available from the sponsor and other people.
- Public figures like politicians, actors and athletes have tons of searchable information written about them online and off. Famous people may be easy to find but searching home addresses, telephone numbers and email addresses are veiled in secrecy (for privacy and protection). The very fact that people attempt to hide from the public spawns the likes of paparazzi who make it their business to pry.
Ever wonder why there's so much junk mail in our snail mail? When people enter their personal and contact information online, whether to make a purchase, cast an opinion or join a group - that data is placed in the hands of other people who are often willing to disclose details for profit.
Totally Free Sources of Online People Search
Some well-known sources of totally free people search of data publicly-available online include:
- VitalRec Search Inquiry: Birth, death, marriage, and divorce records search covering every US county or town in each state as well as international records from major European countries and Canada, Australia, Mexico, New Zealand and the world.
- Copyright Records: If your target person is involved in creative arts such as writer, musician, or has any part in the making of copyrighted media, the US copyright office has online searchable records.People may be found by names, copyright numbers and descriptions of creations.
- Patent Records: When the person you want to find is an inventor or scientist, they could be found searching the publicly-accessible databases of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.
- Federal Bureau of Prisons: If like other millions of people, your person of interest is or has been at one time incarcerated, the federal bureau of prison's searchable website will have them listed.
- The National Sex Offender Public Website: This is a public search website that lists people who are registered sex offenders for all fifty states, US territories and Indian reservations. Of course only people who have been caught and convicted will appear on these scrolls. People suspected with no arrest records will not be disclosed.
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