So, you’ve just received a phone call from an unknown number and you are wondering “Whose number is this?”
This is very common and to some people, it is a bother. Well, the good news is, you can find out who the number is registered to.
There are five ways you can know who a number is registered to and these include;
- Calling the customer care/call centre
- Try a mobile money transaction
- Do a Google or Bing search
- Use a reverse phone lookup service like Truecaller
- Use social media sites
In this article, I will explain each of these in detail and hopefully, you can find an answer to your question – ‘who is this number registered to?’
But first, I will talk about why it is important for you to find out the owner of the unsaved number that calls you. Toward the end of the article, we shall look at some related questions that may also be helpful.
Why is it important to know who called from a specific number?
Getting or missing a call from an unknown number can be exciting, devastating, or simply annoying. Either way, it’s reasonable to be sure who called you using a certain number, here is why:
- To identify threats. With the increasing number of scammers and con men, you need to be sure this call is not from one of them, using caller ID to identify the number will help you discover fraudsters and scammers, then be able to block the number and put that threat off.
- To grab opportunities. The number that called you may be from a long lost friend whose contact you may have lost, or a prospective employer, or a sponsor.
You would not want to miss any of those as these calls may come with particular opportunities. When you find out it is any of these you can arrange a call back.
- To avoid prank calls. Prankers are also busy looking out for who to prank, this call might be from one. This can disorganize your day or delay your activities. It is good to be sure.
To find out who the number is registered to, there are several methods you can try, here are the top five:
5 ways to know who a number is registered to;
1. Call customer care/ the call service center
Call service centers are usually available 24 hours and free of charge. Calling your service provider can help you find out the owner of that unknown number.
They will ask you for the number, and give you basic information like the name to which the number is registered.
2. Try a mobile money transaction process
This is a rather unconventional way of revealing the identity of an unknown number but I find it helpful.
Remember that your goal is to find a registered name for the number, NOT to transact.
To use this method;
Dial the service number of your particular telecom service to get to the menu.
Select the option to send money, select the network/ telecom company of the number, enter the unknown number into the receipt (send money to) bar, and tap send. Enter a certain amount and tap send.
Before the transaction is done, you will get a confirmation page that requires your pin to confirm the transaction.
On this page is the amount you want to transact, the number, and the name to which the number is registered.
Do not proceed! You’ve got what you were looking for. You can tap and cancel, or just leave the process.
This is how I know whose number called me.
3. Do a Google or Bing search
With this method, all you have to do is type the phone number in quotation marks into your search engine.
This will bring up information attached to the number if it is listed or used anywhere online.
This method only works when a number has been listed online, for example, a company number that’s listed on that company’s website.
4. Use reverse phone lookup
There are several online reverse phone lookup services available that can help you figure out ‘who is this number registered to?’.
With this method, all you need to do is type an unknown number into the search and you will receive results including the name and address to which the number is registered.
Details you will receive from the search are dependent on which reverse lookup service you choose to use, your location, as well as your subscription or membership status/type.
The reverse phone lookup can be done on websites like who called me, reveal the number, truecaller, Spokeo, and white pages among many others. For some of the services, you will be required to upgrade your membership or make payments to access the requested details.
Let’s delve into and see how each works.
I have Truecaller topping the list because it works worldwide, and you can find your unknown number identity for free!
To use Truecaller on your desktop;
- In your search engine, go to the Truecaller website and register with your email address and phone number.
- Then type the unknown number in the Truecaller search bar and search.
- The results will show the name registered to the number.
Secondly, you can download the Truecaller Android or iOS app to your phone! This is even better.
Here you will need to register as a user and grant Truecaller permissions to access your contacts.
To use the Truecaller app to find out “who is this number registered to”:
Go to the Truecaller app on your mobile phone or tablet, type the unknown number in the search bar, and tap search.
This will not take much of your time, you will be redirected to a results page with the name to which the number is registered (like in the screenshot) and options on how you would like to proceed, either to call, save or block the number.
Furthermore, you will be able to see the social media platforms on which the number is in use.
With a basic license, you will be able to access real-time caller ID lookup and spam-blocking services free of charge.
Truecaller’s free services use smart technology and can be very helpful, but if you choose to upgrade to premium, you get even more services such as call recording and contact requests.
2. Reveal name
This reverse phone lookup service also works worldwide, but unless the number you’re searching for is a company’s or individual’s number that’s already listed somewhere on the internet, you will only be given the mobile carrier and location (country) where the number is registered.
Otherwise, you will need payments to go through with the lookup.
To use reveal name;
Go to the reveal name website
Choose a country from the dropdown on the right side, add the rest of the digits then tap name lookup to begin the search.
Click Confirm then click NO on the refining search popup box.
It will take about a minute after refining your search, then you will get a results page with the location of the number. Click on see detailed report.
On the next page, you need to check out to see the detailed report of your search, then you get payment options and get to see the rest of the info about the unknown number.
The people finder search engine will give you details of the name, address, photos, social media accounts, and much more information matching the number.
PeopleFinder is used for background checks as well, as it offers a great deal of information.
To find out the unknown number registration;
Go to the website; you will have options to search for Name, phone, and address.
Click on ‘phone’, this will take you directly to INTELIUS, you will start by going through some verifications (age), click on please verify your age and choose your year of birth from the dropdown, and then the search will begin.
It takes some minutes as it searches for name and address, and social media data matching the number. You will see a notification when results are ready, click on view results, then go through the disclaimers and more verifications (not a robot).
You will then be led to the save your results page. Enter your details and click save. This will lead you to a disclaimer and warning page.
Click I understand after reading through the warning about possible surprising information, then onto the results review.
On the results review page; you will be prompted to click alongside the owner’s name. Then go through more disclaimers and agreements.
The final step is to activate your account. This is a paid service, you will need to UNLOCK REPORT on the overview page. Make payments ($0.95) and access your report.
It seems pretty tedious and long but it is much easier when you get to it, and the system does its best to make sure you will use the information for the right reasons, hence the many disclaimers and approvals. Try this out and see how interesting it is.
This is a landline phone contact directory; it helps you find out to who an unknown landline number is registered.
White Pages is divided into two sections, the residential section which has numbers privately owned by individuals, and the business section for numbers owned by businesses.
If an unknown landline number called you and you want to know the owner, just type the number into the white pages search bar, and it will generate details matching the number.
Here is how you can go about this;
Go to the white pages website;
You will have three alternatives you can search for; people search, reverse phone, and reverse address.
Select reverse phone, this will take you to the reverse phone lookup
Type the number into the search bar and click on search.
This will come with results; information matching with the number. The name, address, marital status, any criminal records and more all are options available in the report.
5. Spokeo (U.S)
Spokeo is a US-based people intelligence service that will help you find the identity of an unknown number, as well as connect with other people and research your data.
The Spokeo service is available for use only in the US, so it will find the identity of US-registered unknown numbers and addresses.
This service gives you plenty of information including the name to which the number is registered, the current location and location history, marital status, property ownership, and much more.
You will have to pay to access the report from the search.
To search, go to the Spokeo website and type the unknown number into the search bar then click Search Now.
This will take some seconds to generate the information if the system finds a match.
This is an entirely free way to find the owner of an unknown number.
People often put their contact details on their social media profiles, so you can find out who a number is registered to by typing the number into a social media search bar like Twitter or Facebook.
This however will give you results only if the person to whom the number is registered
- Uses this particular social media platform
- Has put their details (including phone number) on the profile.
Frequently Asked Questions
Qn. Can I check the phone number identity of an unknown text message source?
Yes, you can tell who a text is coming from if you receive one from a number not in your contact list.
Seeing a text message from a number you do not know or understand can be even more disturbing than a call.
You can use the same reverse phone lookup services to find out who sent you a text.
Be careful, some of these messages from unknown numbers may be prompting you to click a certain link or input your password, or the sender may be claiming to be a bank employee or telecom service employee.
Do not click anything or enter a password before you confirm the sender. Do not trust unknown numbers, they can turn out to be very tricky or dangerous.
Qn. Can I find people by email address?
Yes, you can be able to trace people from their email addresses.
The most obvious and free way to find out who sent you an email is to write back and ask the sender who they are.
However, you may not want to do that, or you may not get a response, and therefore you want to try other ways. Here are a few things you can do;
1. You can try and run a reverse email lookup. Several websites offer this service. You can use websites like Peoplefinders, Spokeo, people looker, and many others.
2. Google search can also help you find the person behind the email address. Type the address with quotation marks into the Google search bar and Google will give you results with information attached to the email address.
3. Check different social media platforms. With the widespread use of social media, you should be able to find information about that email address.
Typing the address into a social media platform search bar like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or Instagram will help a great deal.
Qn. Can I completely stop unwanted calls?
While it may be difficult to completely stop all unwanted calls, there are a few steps you can take to significantly reduce them, try:
Registering on the Do Not Call List if available in your country.
Blocking individual numbers on your smartphone.
Using call-blocking apps to identify and block spam.
Be cautious with sharing your number, especially online.
Avoid answering unknown numbers and let them go to voicemail.
Report unwanted calls to relevant authorities or your mobile carrier.
Explore call filtering services offered by carriers or third-party apps.
Qn. How do I find out who ‘no caller ID’ is on my iPhone?
To reveal a no-caller ID on your phone, you will need to activate the “show my caller ID” on your phone. To activate this;
Open the settings app on your iPhone
Scroll down to the phone option, and tap on this option to get to the phone settings page
In the settings, check through to show my caller ID, and tap on the Switch.
This will activate your caller ID and allow the caller ID number to be displayed on your phone when someone calls you.
Receiving calls from unknown numbers is not something you can permanently avoid, but you get to turn the ‘unknown’ into ‘known’ by calling customer care, running a reverse phone lookup, or searching on social media, among other methods explored in this article.
Ascertaining an unknown caller can be of great benefit to you and can be quite relieving. Go ahead, try those methods, and see how they work out.