How to Look Up an Unlisted Telephone Number

By Sharon Guy

Cell phone numbers are private and unlisted.
i cell phone call image by Donald Joski from

Cell phone numbers and unlisted numbers are private, and won't show up if you search a phone directory. There are ways to find the owner of an unlisted phone number, but you might have to pay a fee. There are companies that provide online reverse phone look-up services. Fees vary depending on the number of searches you pay for. Most companies let you pay for one search or sign up for a yearly, premium membership to get unlimited searches. You can also try looking up information about an unlisted number on free search engines.

With a Known Number

Type the phone number into several search engines such as Google, MSN and Yahoo. Type it several ways--with dashes, without dashes and with periods.

Click on the listings that come up with information about the number. When a business or individual posts a phone number on a website, blog or online advertisement such as Craigslist, search engines pick up this information and save it.

Read the listings to find more information about the owner of the number. Look for information about a website or blog that the person uses. This might tell you if it is a telemarketing company, a nonprofit solicitor or an individual.

Type "reverse phone number lookup" in a major search engine if the free search fails. Choose a company and start with its free search by typing the phone number into its search feature. When the listing comes up, it will show the owner's location, and whether more information about the owner is available. Write down the fees for retrieving the information and save it. Research a few other companies and compare prices.

Pay for the search if you only need to look up one number. Pay for a premium membership if you need to do frequent searches. The owner's information will be available after you pay the fee.

Finding a Number

Type the person's name--and any other information you have such as city and state--into a major search engine such as Google. If he has listed his cell phone on a website or in a free online advertisements such as Craigslist, it might show up in a listing.

Type the name--and location if you have it--into the cell phone section of an online cell phone directory such as Traditional phone directories do not publish cell phone numbers or unlisted numbers. has started to compile cell phone information, including cell phone numbers voluntarily submitted by owners. Review the list of names and locations to find the correct person, and pay the fee to receive the person's phone numbers and addresses.

Search through a people-finder service such as or Type the name, city and state into the search feature. You can search by name only if you don't have an address. Review the list that shows the names, ages and locations to see if you found the correct person. You can pay a small fee to obtain more information such as phone numbers.