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Phone numbers are a little like fingerprints; they can reveal a lot about a person, for example, their name or where they live. If you received a call from a number you don’t recognize, the following resources can help you identify the caller before you ring them back.
Several online tools let you reverse lookup and possibly identify who a phone number is registered to.
Limitations - Phone - Number - Identification
Unfortunately, you will run into several limitations with any phone number identification:
If someone added their number to the National Do Not Call Registry or had it removed from a site like WhitePages, it will be difficult to trace that phone number.
Identity - Person - Phone - Number - Numbers
It’s almost impossible to find out the identity of the person behind a mobile phone number for free. Though with North American numbers, you can at least find where the number was registered.
Moreover, many “free” services will try to sell you their service, even if it is possible to find the information for free elsewhere.
Countries - UK - Australia - Reverse - Lookup
Some countries, including the UK and Australia, have restricted the reverse lookup of phone numbers. So if you’re trying to find a number from these countries, you’re out of luck.
Phone numbers can go out of service or change owners. Since it can take some time for a service to catch up on these changes, you can never fully rely on the information you find online.
Restrictions - Mind - Look - Strategies - Origin
With those restrictions in mind, let’s look at the best strategies to check for the origin or owner of a phone number.
This is the brute force method of identifying a phone number, but it’s quick, easy, and completely free. If the call is from an official or otherwise public source, a search engine like Google or DuckDuckGo might come up with every last detail about the location and owner of the phone number.
Screenshot - Example
The screenshot below, for example, shows the...
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