PASADENA, Calif., Dec. 14 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Spokeo is one of the most well-known people search websites, winning numerous industry awards and earning shoutouts on acclaimed TV shows, including “Orange is the new black” and “Mister Robot.” Arguably his most high-profile pop culture exposure comes from MTV popular reality show “Catfish”, where the hosts make extensive use of Spokeo in their quest to unmask the imposters.
Spokeo Company History
Spokeo was founded in 2006 by a group of Stanford graduates – including the CEO Harrison TangCTO Mike Daly and CIO Eric Liang — as a social media aggregator. In those early days, social media startups were a dime a dozen, and Spokeo combined posts from all user contacts into a single feed. This original business model proved difficult to monetize, and the rise of Facebook made it essentially redundant.
When the founders realized that users were willing to pay to search for other users, they pivoted into becoming a people search engine in 2010. Although there are existing and well-established players in the market, Spokeo quickly established himself as one of the best people. search websites. Currently, the company’s research pulls data from more than 14 billion records, aggregated from public records and other publicly available data, to present users with easy-to-read profiles.
A very simple interface
So what’s it like to use Spokeo, if you’re new to people search sites?
When you arrive at Spokeo.com homepage, you will find a very clean and uncluttered interface. At the top right there are links to the help page and for existing users to log in, and front and center you will see a search box.
Whatever information you’re looking for – a name, street or email address, online username or phone number – you can simply type it into the search field. Spokeo’s proprietary search algorithm will recognize the information you enter and automatically draw from its databases. You can also click on links to access specific search types (phone number, address, etc.), but this is optional.
Search options on Spokeo
Spokeo’s search results will give you as much information as possible about the person you’re looking for, although the exact information will vary depending on the type of search you performed. You can also use your search results to prompt or trigger further searches.
reverse phone lookup
Looking up a phone number can tell you who the number is registered to, as well as the location and address of the owner, their phone carrier, and whether it’s a personal or work line. Since phone numbers are often treated as usernames by social platforms, your search may also return available social profiles connected to that number.
Search by name
If you have someone’s first and last name, typing that name into the search box will return an initial list organized by location. When you choose the person most likely to be the person you’re looking for, you’ll see the results available for that person. Results can include the person’s age and month of birth, address, location history, social media profiles, and current and previous email addresses. If applicable, you can also see what they do for a living and the estimated value of any property they own.
More in-depth records, such as criminal and vital records (including available marriage records), are available for an additional fee.
Search by civic address
If you want to know who lives at a certain address, you can enter it in Spokeo’s address search. Search results can reveal the current owner and residents of the property (if they are not the same person) as well as the size of the house and lot and its year of construction. The results can also tell you the current value of the home and the price it last sold for.
Other relevant information you might find useful includes former residents and their contact details, sizes and values of other homes in the area (for comparison purposes), crime statistics in the area and sex offenders known in the area.
Reverse email address lookup
Spokeo’s reverse email search works much the same as its phone search. Just type the email you have in the search bar, and if a match is available, Spokeo will provide you with the name of the person or company associated with the email address (this does not work with disposable email addresses, as these are anonymous by design). This search may return available social media or dating site profiles associated with this email address, as well as alternative emails and other information that you would see with a name lookup search.
Spokeo’s premium offers
Along with its core people search offerings, Spokeo offers a few premium options for those who need them. Additional charges may apply. These include:
If the person you are looking for has been in trouble with the law, this addition to the standard search will often reveal them. It searches records from 1,400 courthouses across the United States — more than 600 million in total — and aggregates information such as a description of the offense, date of filing and date of decision, information on sentencing, etc. Because not all courts track and report the same data, the information available may vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction.
Historical research is how you view an individual’s “vital statistics”: birth and death records, marriage and divorce records, military service records and more.
Spokeo describes its users as falling into two main groups: “connectors”, who want to get in touch with someone else; and the “protectors”, who want to be sure that the people they deal with are legitimate. Spokeo Protect is the company’s identity theft protection service and has corresponding appeal for the latter group.
Spokeo Protect subscribers will receive a number of services, depending on the level of protection chosen. All levels of Spokeo Protect come with dark web monitoring: Spokeo monitors shady underground markets on the so-called dark web where personal information, credit cards and bank account numbers are bought and sold by criminals .
If Spokeo detects illicit activity on your accounts or if your key personal information is offered for sale online, you will receive an alert. You will also have 24/7 access to certified resolution specialists who can help you minimize the damage caused by an identity theft incident and walk you through the steps necessary to restore your identify.
Some potential use cases
If you are a “connector”, you will find several ways to use Spokeo. It can help you find old classmates, long-lost family members, or the person you really enjoyed interacting with on a specific site but only knew by username. You might connect with an old flame or track down the owner of an item you found. One of Spokeo’s best-known ways of helping people connect is through its “Look for angelsvolunteers who help adoptees find (consenting) members of their biological family.
Likewise, “protectors” can make heavy use of Spokeo. Finding the actual person or company behind the phone calls, texts, or emails can help you determine if they are legitimate. It’s also a useful tool for detecting romance scammers and catfishers, or finding out if your partner is “playing the court” on multiple dating sites. If you frequent online marketplaces, Spokeo can help you spot underperforming sellers if they don’t return your calls or texts.
Spokeo can also be a powerful tool for businesses and professionals. Estate agents can use it to locate property owners or verify contact details of potential prospects. Law firms can use it to locate heirs or find parties involved in a lawsuit. First responders can use it to find the owner or tenant of a property in the event of an emergency or natural disaster. The possibilities are literally endless.
The basics of Spokeo
It’s a crowded market, but Spokeo rightfully lays claim to being one of the best people search sites out there. Its combination of public and proprietary data sources gives it a wide reach, and its simplicity and ease of use allow even the most unsophisticated user to easily access all of this available information. It’s priced competitively, and the lack of a long-term commitment — non-Spokeo Protect plans cap out at three months — makes it particularly appealing.
Modern life is full of reasons to use people search, whether you’re looking to connect with distant acquaintances or simply to protect yourself from scammers and spammers. If (or more likely, when) you need those capabilities, Spokeo’s combination of power, convenience, and affordability makes it a compelling option.
Disclosure by content creator
This product review was commissioned by Spokeo, Inc. Fred Decker is a paid content provider for Spokeo, and Spokeo compensated him for providing this product review.
Media contact: Jean Lin, 310-259-4900