How to Find an Unknown Telephone Number

By Joanna Davidson

Find an Unknown Telephone Number
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Unknown numbers make us curious. Who was it? Was the call important? Researching the source of the phone number can offer information about the nature of the call. The Internet offers free and fee-based search options to locate the phone number's owner and other related information. Even cell phone providers offer new ways to track unknown callers and glean information about them.

Free Resources

Type the full number, including spaces, into a search engine such as Google, Yahoo or MSN. Often this will lead you to the website or advertisement of the phone number owner, especially if it's a business number.

Visit the website White Pages and enter the number into the "reverse phone lookup" field. This will tell you if it's a cell phone or land line, where the service may be located, and sometimes will reveal the owner of the phone number. On that page, PeopleSmart also offers an option to look up the owner's name and address for a fee.

On the Yellow Pages home page, click on the "by phone number" link at the top of the page. Enter the area code and phone number in the search field.

Use free services such as 800notes to see if other people have received a call from the same number. Type the number into the search field and the site will bring up all other posts referring to that number, including any call information and what users have discovered about the number.

Fee-Based Resources

Search for number search services in a search engine. Services like US Search offer a profile and detailed information, such as the name, income and address of the number owner, for a fee.

Search the number by texting it from your cell phone to 566587 (for a charge of $1.99, or $2.99 per month for unlimited searches, as of 2010).

Perform a background check using the phone number as a starting point. Websites like Intelius offer these background searches with a reverse phone number look-up option. Reports include information on the phone number owner, phone carrier and carrier location.