Are you getting annoying calls from an unknown number? Or are you being harassed by marketing agencies trying to collect your information? If this is the case, you need to determine who is calling you before answering. If someone is harassing you, or threatening you in any way, you may need to do a reverse phone lookup to have enough data to file a complaint. Whatever your reasons, there are a few easy steps to follow in order to do a successful reverse phone lookup.
Start with the Pros
Professional services such as Check People have access to technology and databases that make it very easy to find information behind a phone number. The advantages of services like this one are countless. They will not only find accurate and relevant information, but they will also display a caller’s cyber footprint. The best thing is, most of them offer free trials, and their services remain cheap after that.
Try Search Engines
If the information attached to a phone number is publicly available, you will be able to find it using Google or Firefox. You just need to tap in the number and sort through the results.
Some sites like Facebook as for a phone number whenever a commercial profile is registered, so a simple social media search should give you plenty of useful data.
What to do if You are a Victim of Harassment
Collection agencies, marketing firms, and other companies are known to harass people with unwanted calls. If you are a victim, here are a few things you can do:
- Block the number. It is the easiest solution, although some companies will use several different numbers to call you. You can block your number using your phone’s built-in software. In the case of landlines, you may need to call your provider and ask them to block the number for you.
- Report the number to your local authorities
How to handle Extortion
If harassment is annoying, being a victim of online extortion may be really scary. If you receive a call from someone who wants to coerce you to give them money in exchange for not releasing sensitive information or threatening you in any way, the first step is to hang up. Never engage in any kind of negotiation, and never ever agree to their terms. If you do, you may never get rid of them. Next, you need to report the number to the authorities and file a formal report.
Elderly people are prone to believe in telephone scammers claiming they won a prize or they are getting something for free. Telephone scams against senior citizens are on the rise, so you need to protect your loved ones. Some scammers are dumb enough to call from their personal –and registered– telephone numbers, so if you find any information about them with a reverse lookup, you should disclose it to authorities when you file a report.
To prevent your loved ones from falling victim to phone scams, you may want to review the following checklist together:
- Has the person properly identified themselves and the company they work for? Have you ever heard of such a company?
- Are they asking for personal information, such as your social security number? If so, hang up immediately.
- If you truly won a prize, you should not be asked to pay any fees to get it. If someone is asking for money over the phone, it is a scam.
If calls continue, here are some tips to stop them.
If you Suspect you are Being Stalked
If someone is stalking you, you may be in danger. If you get plenty of calls where no one answers, you may be a victim of stalking. If you suspect this is the case, you should go to your local authorities immediately, and ask for protection. Always save or write down the numbers calling you.
Protect Your Privacy
Because personal phone numbers are linked to their owners, you might consider checking your own number to find out what information is displayed. If you find conflicting or extremely personal information shown online, you have the right to ask for websites to take it down. Usually, a message to the webmaster will be enough. In some cases, you may even need a court order.
Try not to include your personal number in your social media accounts. If you use social media for business, a good alternative is to get a Google Phone number and use it instead of your personal number. This is also helpful if you want to give your number to someone you met through online dating.
Keeping your personal information safe is complicated in a world permeated by data, but you still have rights. Get informed and exercise them.
Chris Mcdonald has been the lead news writer at complete connection. His passion for helping people in all aspects of online marketing flows through in the expert industry coverage he provides. Chris is also an author of tech blog Area19delegate. He likes spending his time with family, studying martial arts and plucking fat bass guitar strings.