Three Ways to Contact Someone in Today’s World

There was a time when we could contact people by three methods — telegram, letter, and telephone. In all cases, senders usually knew the address or phone number. If they were unsure of either, they could turn to the phone book. These huge tomes of information were founts of information. In addition to the receiver’s name they also had their address and telephone number. And, if a sender knew a phone number but not an address, they could search a reverse lookup phone book or contact the operator.

Contact in the 21st Century

Reaching someone today is easier, yet more complicated. Telegrams are gone. So are phone books for the most part. In its place are call phones, instant messaging, and calls that don’t even need a phone number. If you run into someone who asks you to contact them, you’re not sure how to do so.

Today’s Phone Book

Luckily, the phone book exists in a digital form. In order to determine the best place to locate a person’s contact information, here are three resources.

1. Reverse Phone Lookup. The concept of Reverse phone lookup still exists at numerous sites like Intelius. These sites are not only to search for cell phone numbers, but they’re also used to look up landlines and unlisted numbers. Some of these are free services, while others ask for a fee.
2. Search engines. While not as accurate as a reverse phone lookup, entering information in search engines like Google and Bing can provide the answers you need. This is particularly good when searching for an unrecognized phone number that may be a scam.
3. IM Contact Lists. There are some people who don’t have a phone number at all. Instead, they rely on applications like Skype, WhatsApp, or Facebook’s Messenger to make calls. In these situations, you won’t search by a number. Instead, you look the parties up via their handles. And, if you can’t find their information, you may need to rely on an older technology — email.

Be Cautious

If you decide to use an online reverse phone lookup, you want to be careful. Just like suspicious numbers, there are lookup sites that are also malicious. If they ask for social security number or other critical Personally Identifiable Information (PII), go somewhere else. Furthermore, if you end up paying for a service, avoid using ones that prevent you from looking up all numbers without paying for upgrades. Searching for landlines, cell phones, and unlisted numbers shouldn’t be different prices. Overall, make sure the reverse phone lookup, instant message service, or search engine are legitimate. Keep your information safe as well as your contacts.

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