It’s possible to use Whitepages for a variety of purposes whether it’s looking up an old friend or investigating someone’s entire background, but those more advanced features come at a cost.
Generally easy to use
Lots of searchable data
Data from reliable sources
Costs can add up
Only basic searches are free
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In fact, since its inception way back in 1997 Whitepages has steadily evolved and is now a rich source for locating everything from personal contact information through to serving up information on businesses.
It can also be used to find cell phone numbers, and although it isn't among the best employee background check services, it is still able to provide information on criminal records.
- Want to try Whitepages? Check out the website here
Whitepages has proved to be extra useful during the coronavirus pandemic due to its comprehensive databases of information, but the online service is also useful for a raft of other reasons. This includes pinpointing everything from scam and fraud ratings through to offering up search statistics. Whitepages contains contact information on over 275 million people and is continuing to grow all the time.
There are currently four main variations on the Whitepages browser theme, depending on what you need to do with the online people search service.
Whitepages Unlimited costs $3.99 per month and offers unlimited basic lookups including current address, landlines and relatives. There’s a money back guarantee too. Whitepages Unlimited Plus costs $4.99 per month for up to 20 premium lookups or $19.99 for up to 200 lookups. This gets you the features outlined above, plus cell phone numbers and past addresses.
There’s also a Background Report option, which can be purchased for a one-off fee of $9.99. This offers cell phone and landline numbers, current and past addresses, relatives and associates information, criminal history details, property, financial and public records plus the same money back guarantee.
You can just use the Whitepages Free option, which offers limited basic lookups including current address, landlines and relatives but omits cell phone numbers and past addresses.
Meanwhile, the Whitepages People Search app features in-app purchases. These include: premium lookup, $1.99, 20 Premium lookups monthly, $4.99, legacy lookups monthly, $3.99, contact lookup, $3.99, background report, $9.99, Whitepages Annual Subscription, $29.99, contact bundle (3 lookups), $7.99, full story plan, $14.99, background report bundle, $20.99, background report bundle, $16.99.
Whitepages has grown its set of features so that it now proves useful for a variety of tasks including finding a person, looking up an address and/or a phone number, screening a tenant, getting a background check and finding a business. Whitepages Premium is aimed at individuals and small business owners while Whitepages Tenant Check is more for landlords.
The former service lets people and businesses find, vet and verify people, can supply their phone numbers and addresses along with revealing contact and background information. This can include public records and criminal history details. Meanwhile, Whitepages Tenant Check for landlords provides a source of FCRA-compliant background reports that can reveal important details on credit, eviction and a prospective tenant’s criminal history.
While Whitepages is useful for helping to connect people with each other, it’s also got other practical tools, such as its Reverse Phone Lookup for checking who’s calling you, plus app editions that offer a quick and efficient way of getting smaller chunks of information quickly if you’re on the move.
The Whitepages website offers up a very speedy experience. At its most basic level you simply enter your search criteria into the dialog box and start your search. You’ll need to enter some basic information, such as names, possible location and so on in order to improve the odds of getting a correct return on your search. Considering how much data the Whitepages databases hold though the way it scans through this info and returns results is very good indeed.
Ease of use
Customers of Whitepages can choose from using the online browser-based experience or opt for the Whitepages app. The latter is basically a tweaked version of the web edition, which lets users view current contact information.
Whitepages has aimed this primarily at people who want to get in touch with people quickly, or find out who’s calling them. The app experience, much like the desktop edition, is pretty straightforward as all you’re really doing is tapping into the might of the Whitepages information databases.
However, the Reverse Phone Lookup is handy if you’re after a quick and easy app supplement to Whitepages that just doles out information on phone numbers. Although it’s only available on iOS this is ideal for quick number searches. If you find a person and want to unlock a more comprehensive report then Whitepages allows you to do this as you go.
We found that by going in via this route there was also the option to choose an Enhanced Background Report, which delivers and instant background report plus up-to-the-minute criminal records retrieval for a $29.98 one-time fee.
If you get to the point where you need some assistance using this online service, Whitepages has the favored online Help Center to start with. That contains a knowledge base containing FAQs, Premium-focused help and assistance for customers using the Whitepages service on mobile devices. There’s also an option to submit a request if you need to ask a more complex questions not covered in the knowledge base, or have a query about your account, billing procedures and so on.
Whitepages continues to provide a range of useful services, and has an awful lot of data in order to back up its improved online experience and associated apps. Of course, with its data coming from a variety of sources, including the likes of phone companies and public records the tradeoff is always about how much privacy people could and should expect.
Thankfully, Whitepages now takes on this issue by offering individuals the option of removing themselves from the company database, or correcting or updating information where that might be necessary.
Whitepages leaves us with mixed feelings. It is a useful tool, and much like more general searches on the web and using social media outlets, Whitepages serves a purpose. Quite how comfortable everyone feels about having their personal information so easily available is another thing, although that never seems to put people off using Facebook either.
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Rob Clymo has been a tech journalist for more years than he can actually remember, having started out in the wacky world of print magazines before discovering the power of the internet. Since he's been all-digital he has run the Innovation channel during a few years at Microsoft as well as turning out regular news, reviews, features and other content for the likes of TechRadar, TechRadar Pro, Tom's Guide, Fit&Well, Gizmodo, Shortlist, Automotive Interiors World, Automotive Testing Technology International, Future of Transportation and Electric & Hybrid Vehicle Technology International. In the rare moments he's not working he's usually out and about on one of numerous e-bikes in his collection.