Reverse phone lookup is the process of getting the names and other personal information of unknown callers using their phone numbers. There are many reasons why Minnesotans may decide to perform reverse phone searches. While some may want to find out whether anonymous numbers calling them are from scammers or stalkers, others may do so to find more information on vaguely familiar contacts. Regardless of their reasons, searching extensive directories maintained by phone number lookup services can provide information about who those numbers are registered to.
What are Minnesota Phone Numbers?
Minnesota fixed and mobile phone numbers are connected to landlines and cellphones. While the percentage of people using wireless phone services surpassed those with landline subscriptions, there's still a lot of people and businesses still using fixed phone lines. In 2017, the FTC reported that about 2.17 million Minnesotans have landline phone services. However, this figure accounts for both landline and Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) subscriptions. VoIP functions in a similar way as landlines but uses fiber optics to route phone calls over the internet instead of landline copper wires.
The Minnesota phone use trend reported by the Center for Disease Control in 2018 indicates that about 5% of homes use landlines exclusively and 13% of households use both landlines and wireless cell phones. On the other hand, more than 56% of Minnesota homes solely depend on their wireless cell phones to make calls. The major phone carriers in Minnesota include Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, and Sprint. These carrier cover Minnesota with their networks to different extents:
- Verizon Wireless with 70% coverage
- AT&T with 68% coverage
- T-Mobile with 62% coverage
- Sprint with 30% coverage
Can I Search a Phone Number and Find Out Who it Is?
Yes. You can search a phone number and find out who owns it using the services provided by reverse phone lookup companies. These companies gather and provide identifying information such as name, address, social media accounts, and more about United States phone subscribers. You can conduct a phone number search by name, phone number lookup by address, reverse phone lookup by zip code, phone number lookup Verizon, or by other carriers. It is important to note that results are not available for all numbers. This is because scammers and other malicious actors routinely call with fake numbers and from disposable phones making it difficult to track the identities and locations of such callers.
Is There a Free Way to Look up Someone’s Phone Number?
Yes, but not for all phone numbers. Landline phone numbers are public records meaning they can be found through free phone number lookup services. However, this is not the same for cell phones. Google used to offer reverse cell phone lookup free of charge until it was formally closed down because of privacy concerns. Even then, if the number belongs to a business or someone publicly lists their number, their name may be found with quick Google searches.
Free cell phone number lookup through Verizon is no longer active. However, paid phone lookup services can provide reverse cell phone lookups and return the names and addresses of individuals assigned submitted phone numbers. In addition to names and addresses, the information provided by these phone number lookup companies may also include photos, social media handles, and criminal background records.
What are Phone Lookup Services?
Phone lookup services are companies that provide special search engines or website directories that can dig up subscriber information associated with phone numbers. While caller ID is a useful phone feature that matches names with phone numbers, its usefulness is limited and it is easy to fool it to display wrong caller information. Scammers typically call with false caller IDs using VoIP numbers. They do this to make their schemes sound credible to their targets and also to avoid detection. Phone lookup services are better than caller ID at identifying individuals calling with unknown numbers.
Is Reverse Phone Lookup Legal in Minnesota?
Yes. Using reverse phone lookup searches to identify unknown callers is legal in Minnesota. While there are no state laws ruling on the legality of phone number lookup, Minnesota residents can use and provide this tool as long as they do so within the boundaries of the law. This means that it is illegal to use reverse phone search for the purpose of defrauding or harming others.
Minnesota reverse phone lookup services must also not contravene state and federal privacy laws. A typical phone number lookup search only returns information available in the public domain. Legitimate phone lookup search providers only pull information from public records. These include carrier databases, public posts on social media platforms, and public court, law enforcement, and government agency records. While it may take some time, anyone can request and obtain these records. Reverse phone lookup services help users save time and effort when looking up these pieces of information.
What Information Can You Get from a Minnesota Phone Number Lookup Search?
The most important information provided by a reverse phone lookup search is the name of the individual registered to the number searched. Besides the full name of the unknown caller, a Minnesota phone number lookup search can return the following information:
These four identifying information are provided by most reverse phone lookup free services. For more detailed results, try a lookup search provider that offers paid tiers. Such phone lookup search providers do a deeper dive to find records that can paint more complete pictures of unknown callers. For example, a paid service can find the subject’s social media accounts and skim the public posts there for photos, recent activities, and updates to the biodata of unknown callers.
A paid service is also recommended for gathering information about identified unknown callers. You can use such a service to confirm the identity of a strange caller trying to scam you. Detailed information provided by paid reverse lookup search services can also be used to investigate phone stalkers and spam callers. These phone number lookup providers can access public criminal records of identified phone users and search sex offender registries, Better Business Bureau databases, and watchlists of consumer protection agencies to warn users about fraudsters, past offenders, and businesses with bad records. Details gathered by such searches can be used when reporting these individuals and organizations to law enforcement.
What is a VoIP Number?
A VoIP number is a virtual number that is similar to other phone numbers but uses the internet for phone calls, SMS, and fax instead of copper wires. Because of the flexibility and cost benefits of VoIP services, many homes and businesses in Minnesota are increasingly adopting VoIP for their telephone needs. VoIP service providers in Minnesota, such as GoToConnect, assign virtual numbers that can be routed to many computers, mobile devices, and telephone at once. In addition to multiple connections, voice calls, and texting, these virtual numbers also support voicemails, call forwarding, call waiting, and video calls.
Phone scammers exploit the flexibility and convenience of VoIP services to obtain false United States numbers bearing area codes of their choice. Another exploited benefit of VoIP is that virtual numbers are not limited to a particular phone, name, or location. This makes it difficult for reverse phone search services to look up and find who owns these numbers.
VoIP numbers cannot be distinguished from fixed cellular numbers and allowing unknown calls to go to voicemail is one of the safest ways to avoid scammers. Also, to be sure the calls are coming from who they claim to be, Minnesotans can confirm by looking up these numbers using reverse phone tools.
What is a Minnesota Phone Number Area Code?
Minnesota area codes are the first three digits of 10-digit phone numbers issued in the state. They represent different regions of the state. Area codes were first introduced as part of the North American Numbering Plan (NANP) in 1947. This plan was designed to make dialing long distance calls easier and also maintain a consistent phone numbering system in the country.
What is a Minnesota Phone Number Prefix Code?
A phone number prefix code is the middle block of three numbers in a 10-digit phone number. Prefix codes are also known as central office codes or exchange codes because they serve specific towns and municipalities within the state. Using (218) 123-4567 as an example;
- 218 is the area code
- 123 is the prefix code
- 4567 is the line number
+1 precedes every Minnesota phone number that includes the country code. Using +1 (320) 123-4567
- +1 is the United States country code
- 320 represents the area code
- 123 is the prefix code
- 4567 is the line number specific to each phone line