1What Is a People Search Engine?
People search engines are similar to typical search engines; people search engines index online content but focus on people’s personal details and store the results in huge databases to return information upon request. Different parameters are used to search for people on these sites such as target e-mail address, phone number, social username, and full name. Some websites offer additional search parameters such as relative names, mailing address, date of birth, known aliases, ages, and even photographs using a reverse image search technique. The databases used by people search engines to locate information are diverse. Find out how to locate someone online here.
For instance, many people search engines search within the deep web to extract information from source databases that typical search engines cannot reach; these include birth and death databases, public records (such as criminal and tax records), and other overlooked sources (such as information stored in proprietary databases). Please bear in mind that the people search engines will also index results from social media platforms such as Facebook and LinkedIn, making them a convenient solution to return comprehensive result sets.
Online investigators (such as law enforcement and intelligence services) need people search engines to acquire accurate information about their targets; other parties are also interested in using such services. For example, employers can conduct background checks on their perspective employees, and individuals can look up the amount of personal information that is revealed about themselves online.
What Are Public Records?
We already talked about people search engines; these sites derive part of their results from public repositories. So, what do we mean when we say public records? Public records consist of information that has been mostly produced by government entities and is meant to be nonconfidential. Every person on Earth has a set of public records. For example, the most important mandatory public records of every human is their birth and death records! Different countries handle public records differently, as public records will contain personally identifiable information (PII) about people, and exposing such details to the public is subject to law.
In the United States, access to national public records is governed by the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA),i which clearly states that any person has the right to obtain access to government information in executive branch agency records. Until now, the United States was the only country in the world that gives unrestricted access to public records of its citizens. This means searching for United States citizens and residents returns richer results compared with other countries.
Government records come in different types such as text, photographs, and maps, and they are stored in paper and electronic formats as well such as CD/DVDs, tapes, and computer databases. Aside from laws regulating access to public records, what you need to know is that many online services offer access to such data for free or in exchange for a small fee.