Sunday, October 10, 2010

Finding Living People

Genealogists search for their ancestors - people long dead; but sometimes they have a need to find a living person to help with genealogy research.

Losing touch with a cousin or the need to find a distant relative to help with research are just a few of the reasons to search for a living person.

There are a number of people finder search engines that are very good at what they do.  Some of them search the web; some search public records; some of them can search the deep web databases that don't normally show up on a Google search.

Sometimes they point to pay-for-databases, but most of the information is free.  There is generally enough free info that it usually isn't necessary to pay for a living person search.

Here are my favorite US-based people search engines:
Searches not only the web, but also the deep web or invisible web.  Since most personal profiles, public records and other people-related documents are stored in databases and not on static web pages, this search engine finds the higher-quality information about people that is simply "invisible" to a regular search engine.
Free people search engine that gives address and telephone number for free. ZabaSearch also supplies the birthdate which can help narrow down the correct person.
White pages results show age and related people to help narrow down the right person.
Find people through the company they work for.
Step by step ideas for finding people - long lost mother, long lost father and other relatives.

US Search

When the free people search engines can't help, you can always try one of the pay people finders.  They say "Guaranteed - no results, no charge".

When I saw how much information was available to other people when I searched for my own name, I was tempted to opt out of these search engines.  It is public information and posted for all to see.  But then I realized if a long-lost or distant relative was searching for me, I didn't want to close the door by opting out.  Opting in or opting out of these people finder search engines is a hard decision to make but everyone must choose for themselves how much info about themselves they are willing to have available on the internet to help people find them.

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