How to Cross-Reference Telephone Numbers

Updated March 21, 2017

There are different techniques and resources to cross-reference (also called a reverse search) a telephone number for finding information, such as a name or address, that is associated with the number. You can cross-reference a telephone number through reverse directories as well as through search engines and online databases, most of which cost you nothing.

Check reverse directories (also called criss-cross directories) at your local library. These books list information by categories, such as phone numbers. Look up the telephone number numerically, starting with its prefix. Ask your reference librarian where to find the reverse directories.

Run a reverse phone number swarch online. One multiple search engine resource is the "Reverse Directory Phone Book for White Pages, Yellow Pages & Reverse Street Address" where you can conduct a phone number cross-reference search in AnyWho, Google, Dex Knows and ixQuick. Instructions are on the form.

Run a reverse phone number search in Pipl. This is a deep web search engine, which means its web crawlers find information missed by common search engines. Go to "Pipl: phone lookup," enter the phone number and press the "Search" button. The results display information cross-referenced to the number in web pages, online documents, social networking sites and more.

Hire a private investigator. Private investigators have access to proprietary databases not available to the public that enables them to conduct more extensive cross-reference searches on a number. To find a qualified investigator, contact your state professional private investigator association or call a law firm and ask which investigators they recommend for locating people.

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About the Author

In 1997 Harlequin published Colleen Collins' first novel, followed by many more by Harlequin and Dorchester. Her articles and writing have appeared in "P.I. Magazine," "Pursuit Magazine" and "Cosmopolitan." She earned a B.A. in theater arts from University of California, Santa Barbara and is an active member of Mystery Writers of America.