You may think you know a person, but do you really? Often, people aren’t who you think they are or who they claim to be. Eventually, you end up seeing their true colors. But it may be too late. You may already be hurt.
Background-check businesses like TruthFinder allow you to learn more about a person in time. They save you a painful headache down the road. You get the unvarnished truth about your friends, family, acquaintances, and neighbors.
Of course, not all background-check businesses do what they claim to do. Often, the information they suss out is misleading. Is TruthFinder an effective, legit business? Or is it a scam waiting to happen? Read our review to find out!
TruthFinder – An Introduction
TruthFinder is a public records search company based out of San Diego, California. They’ve been in business since 2015. Over the years, they’ve come to be one of America’s most popular and trusted background-check brands.
The company is listed with the BBB and has an A+ rating. An A+ rating is almost a guarantee the business is both above board and competent. According to the BBB, TruthFinder was started over 15 years ago in 2003 in CA.
At the moment, TruthFinder hosts 9 million unique search sessions each month. The company crawls through millions of unique public records to retrieve the information you’re after. The information found is neatly arranged in a report.
TruthFinder – Services Offered
What kind of services does TruthFinder offer? And how well do they measure up against the other people search businesses out there? First, we give you an overview of their services and later pit them against the competition.
Here’s a brief summary of the services provided by TruthFinder:
1. People Search
With people search, you can look up someone by their first name, last name, and current location. This is the service used most often by people looking to find lost friends, family, acquaintances, and old lovers.
What sort of information does this service retrieve for you? You get the person’s full name, their current address, address history, phone numbers, DOB, age, location, possible occupation, education, potential associates, and more.
2. Background Check
Want to screen a potential girlfriend/boyfriend or an online seller? If yes, this is the service to opt for. It’s a full-fledged check of someone’s background. The information gives you a good idea of someone’s character.
The information you get includes names, aliases, financial assets, photos, liens, bankruptcies, professional licenses, weapons permits, criminal records, arrest records, civil court cases, and much more.
3. Criminal Records
This one is pretty self-explanatory. If you’re worried about someone being a convicted criminal or sexual offender, this is the service to sign up for. You get a copy of a person’s publicly available criminal record, containing a detailed overview of offenses.
TruthFinder looks through national-level or Federal records. Crimes turned up include felonies, misdemeanors, sexual offenses, court information, and traffic violations.
4. Public Records
The public records are documents about a person that anyone can access. The information you can turn up about a person depends on the local state laws. Usually, though, you get a wealth of information.
TruthFinder will look up records like addresses, assets, civil judgments, census data, property records, telephone numbers, email addresses, arrest records, marriage records, hunting licenses, and much more.
5. Address Lookup
With an address lookup, you can learn more about a property and the people living in it. It’s a good way to scout out a potential new neighborhood or learn more about your existing one. It also allows you to find friends and family.
The address lookup service turns up information based on an entered address. The information retrieved includes resident names, phone numbers, assets, vehicles, UCC filings, sexual offender status, and much more.
6. Reverse Phone Lookup
The reverse phone lookup service allows you to identify a caller on your phone. Armed with just their phone number, you can discover a person’s full name, their approximate location, and possibly other contact details.
This service is often used by people identifying scam callers. Also, people can find out who their partner is messaging or whether a potential new date is legit or not.
7. Phone Book
Ever since people stopped using landlines, traditional phone books are useless. The TruthFinder phone book is an evolved, digitized version of a phone directory that does more than just let you find a person’s number.
What kind of information do you get? TruthFinder will share a person’s social media pictures, their email addresses, and other personal information.
8. Dark Web Scan
Identity theft is, unfortunately, a common occurrence these days. It’s hard to protect your identity, not when so much of it is easily accessible to anyone online. That’s where TruthFinder’s Dark Web Scan comes in.
With Dark Web Scan, TruthFinder can monitor your social security number, bank account, phone number, social media accounts, cards, medical IDs, and more. If it detects a data breach, you’ll get a notification.
9. Family Tree
Finally, TruthFinder offers a family tree service that generates a full genealogy. If you’ve always been proud of your lineage or mystified where all your relatives are, you might want to check this out.
The company will generate an interactive family tree based on your full name. They use public records to find your possible relatives – some of which may be long lost. You can edit and customize the family tree.
Does TruthFinder offer more services than the competition? At first glance, yes. If you look closer, though, you’ll see that TruthFinder is just better at tooting its own horn. You get similar services from every other background-checker.
TruthFinder – Pricing
Is TruthFinder expensive? Like many people search businesses, TruthFinder requires you to sign up for a monthly membership plan. You can’t purchase individual reports from them. They do offer a cheap 5-day trial, though.
When you sign up for their trial or a membership plan, you can generate an unlimited number of standard reports. These standard reports contain basic information about a person like their contact details, but not much else.
How much does membership cost? Here are the pricing tiers:
- 5-day trial: $1 – but you get signed on for a 1-month membership plan automatically unless you cancel within 5 days.
- 1 month: $16.71
- 3 months: $47.13 ($15.71 per month)
- 6 months: $82.26 ($13.71 per month)
If you want information not included in the standard report, you need to purchase a premium report. Premium reports set you back by $14.95 each. They contain a ton of information not included in the basic report:
- Civil judgments
- Tax Liens
- Criminal records
- And much more
So, getting back to our previous question: Is TruthFinder expensive? Compared to other similar businesses, it’s competitive.
Their 5-day trial for $1 is cheap. It allows you to check them out before committing to a purchase. Their standard reports aren’t all that great, though. You’ll probably end up purchasing premium reports for $14.95 each.
Canceling a TruthFinder Membership
You can’t conveniently cancel your TruthFinder membership from your account. Instead, you have to call customer care on the phone. Customer care is available 7 days a week, from 5 AM to 10 PM PST. The number is 800 699-8081.
If they provide you with misleading or inaccurate info, you can request a full refund.
TruthFinder – Data Accuracy
TruthFinder has a good number of services on offer at a reasonable price. But is the information retrieved any good?
User opinions vary. Some praise the data accuracy, others are bitterly disappointed. Sometimes TruthFinder will turn up accurate info, sometimes it won’t. This is about the norm for a background check service.
Note that the internet activity history turned up by TruthFinder falls far short of expectations. You could find the same yourself via Google – and probably faster. A lot of users have complained about it. Avoid this feature if you can.
TruthFinder – Customer Service
TruthFinder offers better-than-average customer service. You can contact them via phone at (800) 699-8081. They’re available 7 days a week, from 5 AM to 10 PM. You can also email them: [email protected].
Unlike many background-check businesses, the TruthFinder service is also active on social media and online review sites. They’re often seen addressing customer complaints and even issuing refunds.
How to Use TruthFinder
To use TruthFinder, you need to create an account on their website. You’ll also have to sign up for a plan during the account creation process. Alternatively, you can start searching for info first and then create an account.
Once your account has been registered, you need to sign in on the TruthFinder website or download their app. You can also use Facebook to register and sign in.
After you’re signed in, you will be able to search for people with their name, address, and the like. Select the kind of search you want to conduct, input the requisite info, and click search. Then wait for a handful of minutes.
A report will be generated for you. Click “Open Report”. The report is very in-depth, interactive, and well-laid-out. You can click on the category you want more info about, like criminal records or relationship status.
Note that if you want more information, you will have to purchase the premium report. It will be advertised to the right of the standard report, it’s easy to spot.
How TruthFinder Works
Wondering how TruthFinder works? Their server searches through digitized public records made accessible by the government online. The information retrieved is organized in an easy-to-peruse report for you.
TruthFinder doesn’t allow you to check through records that haven’t yet been made available online.
TruthFinder Breakdown – The Good, the Bad, the Average
1. The Good
- Accurate reports: TruthFinder offers reports that are more accurate than is the norm. You can expect a ton of information, but you’ll need to check the facts later.
- Dark web protection: The Dark web protection offered by TruthFinder is unique and certainly sounds useful. You get notified if your cards, bank account, and other personal information is being sold online.
- Neat genealogy feature: You can create a personalized family tree on the website. It’s not exactly a standard feature.
2. The Bad
- Limited info: For a monthly fee, you can generate an unlimited number of standard reports. The problem is the reports have a limited amount of information.
- Expensive: As mentioned, TruthFinder allows you to generate unlimited reports for a flat monthly fee, but the reports themselves are basic. You’ll probably end up buying a premium report for $14.95 extra.
- Occasional scaremongering: Many people without a criminal background are shown as having one. This could be a way TruthFinder pads up its criminal reports. But we think it’s needless scaremongering.
3. The Average
- Services offered: The services offered by TruthFinder are comprehensive but about what one would expect. You won’t get to hire a court runner to check through physical records stored in the real world.
Our Verdict – Worth Your Time
TruthFinder is a legit people search business. TruthFinder is available as an Android and iOS app, making it super convenient to access. The company offers a good number of services at a reasonable price. The family tree is especially nice.
While their information isn’t always up to par, it’s good enough for the casual user. We can recommend TruthFinder, though there are better services out there.