How to Do a Reverse Phone Lookup
Have you ever stumbled on an old journal with phone numbers you scribbled down years ago, but couldn’t recall who they belong to? Or perhaps you’re about to make an online purchase from a brand and want to ensure their legitimacy by double-checking if their business phone number matches their identity. Reverse phone lookup has your back.
By entering a phone number, you can gain a world of information about the identity behind a call or text—whether it’s an old friend, a customer, a relative, or even a scammer. This necessity is more crucial in today’s society than ever, especially when you consider the number of prank and scam calls that are reported. In fact, according to recent studies, about 73.6 million calls were globally flagged as spam or fraud daily during the first quarter of 2023.
That’s why this guide will walk you through what a reverse phone lookup is and how to perform one to save you time and protect you from unsolicited or dangerous calls.
What Is a Reverse Phone Lookup?
Think of a reverse phone lookup as a detective tool that allows you to identify who a specific phone number belongs to, including their name, location, social media accounts, relatives, and employment history, to list a few things. It’s called a reverse lookup tool because, unlike the traditional search tool, you start with a phone number and end up with the information of the face behind it.
How Does a Reverse Phone Lookup Work?
Nearly everyone has personal records stored in governing agencies, business entities, phone companies, and other third parties, most of which can be accessed publicly. These bits of information, which are stored in various databases, are usually linked to an individual’s phone number in one way or the other.
For example, a user who creates a Facebook account provides his or her phone number. In the same, a citizen who wants to register a driver’s license might be required to include their number as a means of identification. Other personal details included in the form are somewhat tied to the number, and when you reverse search it, these details will appear as a result.
However, a reverse phone lookup tool itself does not have the power to get the required information. It relies on available records stored in public databases and search engines and gathers and consolidates the data from these sources, cross-checks them, and arranges them into an easily readable format.
This is why when you search for a number on Facebook, you can get the user’s name, LinkedIn profile URL, home address, or family contact.
What Steps Are Required to Run a Reverse Number Search?
Performing a reverse phone number search is quite straightforward. You can either use a dedicated online service or other resources like Google, social media, and white pages. If you are using a reverse lookup platform, here are the steps to follow:
Choose a Reputable Service Provider
You will find tons of reverse phone lookup tools online. However, they are not all equal. Some are free, while others charge a fee, and some might even be outright scams (usually the ones with zero traffic). Therefore, to get the most out of your search without compromising your safety and privacy, you need to be sure that you are looking on a reputable service provider.
One reverse phone lookup service that lives up to expectations is Nuwber. With this search tool, you have access to over 325 million phone numbers from all 50 states, from Alabama to Wyoming. And the information you get cuts across a wide range of categories, including full names and aliases, address history, professional licenses, and even judgments.
Enter the Phone Number
Locate the search bar on the website and enter the phone number you want to look up, including the area code. To make the process easier and faster, Nuwber now allows to reverse search the number by area code. So, if you see that you are contacted by a number that starts with 276, for example, then its owner is from Virginia.
After that, click the search button to begin your query. This process is similar to how you would use the Google search bar.
Review the Results
Wait for the service to gather and consolidate all the relevant information related to the phone number. Once it’s done, you will receive a detailed report that includes the owner’s social media profiles, email addresses, location, date of birth, and much more.
The search process may vary slightly depending on the platform you use, but one important factor to consider is that not all reverse phone lookup services deliver accurate or up-to-date information. Some providers may offer more comprehensive results for a fee. So, evaluate whether the additional information is worth the cost.
In addition, keep in mind that if the owner of the phone number is not listed, there’s a chance you will get a null result. Despite the ton of information out there, not everyone is captured. Some users might have private or unpublished numbers that can’t be accessed by the public.
What if a Reverse Phone Lookup Doesn’t Provide Information About a Number?
While reverse search tools can help you unmask a caller’s identity in most instances, there are cases when there may not be any records. But don’t give up just yet, as there are a few more options you can explore.
Call or Text the Number
When you receive a phone call from a number you don’t recognize, there’s a high possibility that the caller will call you again if they have a legitimate reason for reaching out. In this scenario, you can wait for their next call and answer it. Otherwise, simply call or text the number to find out who’s behind it.
Use Google or Social Media
Another option is to search for the number on Google or social media platforms like X (Twitter), LinkedIn, or Facebook. There’s a chance that the phone number may have been shared publicly by the owner, so you can quickly identify who it belongs to.
Running a reverse phone lookup is quite simple, and if you know where to look, you can uncover the person behind an anonymous call or text. If you do it for other purposes, like looking for information about people, then it’s important to respect other people’s privacy and respect their boundaries.
Either way, a reverse phone lookup does more good than harm considering the amount of scammers, spammers, and other con artists.