Remaining Options to Help Find for The Owner of a Cell Phone

As mentioned several times on this site, our directory restricts information on cell numbers, but what if you are desperate to look up information on someone's cell using their name? While privacy concerns have caused most directories such as ours to limited or restrict such searches. It is possible that the number can be obtained, assuming one of the following scenarios:

Traditionally, telephone directories have only carried residential phone numbers, but more recently some of them have begun expanding beyond residential numbers. In some cases this is without the directory even aware of the change. What I am referring to are those numbers that began life as a residential home phone number and were later ported over to a cell phone number. It is these numbers that are often the most likely to be found in a telephone directory.

The telephone directories use NPANXX data (more here) to help determine if a number is a landline or cellular.  NPANXX data can only identify the type of line which a phone number was originally issued as. When a home phone number is ported from a residential number, the data does not change. When one of these sites searches to determine if a number is a landline or cellular they will not receive accurate data if the number has been ported. So even if a restriction is in place to disallow information on the owners of cell phones, the site may not be able to determine what is or what is not a cell phone.  For more information on porting see our article on cell phone number portability.

Another way in which you may be able to lookup the number is by using a specific search query in the search engines. Search engines often pick up information when it is posted online.  It is possible someone posted a cell number on a friend's Facebook page or something similar. Perhaps it was published in an employee or school directory.

Even if it has been published online, you still have to find it, to help with this, try placing quotes around the persons name whose phone you are looking for.  Then add the following phrase after the name cell OR mobile OR cellular OR wireless OR phone OR number OR {insert area code} (if you know what their area code is, otherwise stop at number). Your search will then look something like this, "Jon Doe” cell OR mobile OR cellular OR wireless OR phone OR number or 555. Doing this tells the search engine that you are only looking for that specific persons name and looking for instances where either cell, mobile, cellular, wireless, phone, or the area code appears.

Finally, some telephone directories and phone lookup sites have begun collecting opt in lists.  Therefore, if someone extends their permission to publish their cell phone information in the phone directory they can do so. We will have to see just how successful this will be, as right now few people knowingly visit those sites to opt in to have their information made available.

We hope this information helps you with your cell phone lookup. It is rather unfortunate that many phone numbers simply can't be found by searching for a name. Since a few can, we offer these tips to help with your search.