When you want to know more about someone, you can hire a business specializing in background checks. For a fee, said businesses will go through people’s public records and digital footprint and share the results with you.
US Search is one such background check company that offers its services online. They have been around for a while and are generally considered effective by the majority of their users.
Should you pay US Search to conduct a background check for you? Are they worth your precious time and hard-earned cash? We do an in-depth review on the company to help you make an informed decision!
US Search – An Introduction
US Search is operated by a parent company called PeopleConnect, Inc. The company is based in Seattle, Washington. US Search was born out of a merger of a social networking company Classmates and a people-profiling company Intelius.
US Search was made with a simple motto: providing well-organized, in-depth, empowering profiles about people. The company is currently helmed by Abani Heller, who has over 10 years of experience in executive roles.
For the most part, US Search lives up to its motto. It gathers information about people online and shares it with you in an easy-to-access report format. You can generate people profiles on their website in a handful of minutes.
US Search – Services Offered
What kind of information can US Search dig up for you? They offer an array of information-retrieval services:
1. People Search
With the People Search service, you can find lost family, old friends, relatives, and other acquaintances. To locate the person you’ve lost, you need to furnish at least a last name. A first name and current city/state help refine the search.
What kind of information does the People Search service turn up? You’ll receive the person’s current address, address history, phone numbers, other contact information, household member details, home value, and more.
Check out US Search’s alternative app TruePeopleSearch
2. Reverse Phone Lookup
Reverse Phone Lookup allows you to trace unknown callers. You’ll learn the unknown callers name and approximate current location. To use this service, all you need to do is input the unknown number on the US Search website.
Reverse phone lookup services are always in demand. People use it to sometimes keep tabs on who their partners are in constant touch with. Occasionally, parents use the service to ensure their children aren’t in touch with known sex offenders.
3. Email Search
Need to find someone’s email address? Or do you have an email address and need to find the owner? With the Email Search service offered by US Search, you can do both. To access the service, you need either an email address or a name.
The service combs through the internet and available public records to generate a list of preview results. If you’re lucky and the information is accessible, you’ll get the address and the phone number of the person you’re trying to find.
4. Social Network Search
Need to find an old friend? Want to learn more about someone you just met? Or are you curious about the photos and videos an acquaintance has shared online? You can use the Social Network Search service for all three.
The Social Network Search service looks through the majority of popular social networking sites, including Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn. You need a last name to initiate the search. A location will narrow down the results.
5. Property Records
Want to know if someone owns properties and where? The Property Records service accesses publicly listed property records. These are the same records lenders and appraisers have access to.
The Property Records report allows you to see ownership deeds, property details, and maps. The information should allow you to guess at someone’s net worth. To run a search, you need the target’s current street address, city, and ZIP.
6. Criminal Records
Concerned someone you met recently might have a criminal record? US Search allows you to find out with the criminal records search. To initiate the search, you need the person’s last name at the very least.
What kind of information can US Search find? It digs up conviction records, felonies, sex offenses, misdemeanors, traffic violations, and other major or petty offenses. You can choose to run a State or Federal search.
7. Background Check
Finally, US Search also offers a service. This is a comprehensive service. You get a person’s current address, address history, phone number, email address, criminal background records, and more.
You need the target’s last name, at the very least, to begin the search. A first name and the current city/state will help you narrow down the search results.
US Search Pricing
Is US Search cheap? It’s about average for a background-check company. You can choose to pay per-report or opt for a subscription model. The subscription model allows you to generate unlimited monthly reports.
The per-report pricing varies depending on the service you opt for. For example, the People Search service costs $2.45. A Criminal Check will set you back by $14.95. Finally, the comprehensive Background Check costs $39.95.
The monthly subscription – or OmniSearch membership fee – costs $19.95. You can generate an unlimited number of People and Phone searches for the price. They also offer a quarterly subscription for $49.95.
Note that if you opt to purchase a single report, you are still automatically signed up for the OmniSearch membership by default. Make sure to cancel it within 2 days to avoid being charged the monthly membership fee of $19.95.
We think the US Search pricing plans are reasonable – though they aren’t transparent about their plans. The purchasing process is needlessly complicated, designed to get you subscribe to OmiSearch. They also don’t do refunds.
Canceling a US Search Subscription
Canceling a US Search Subscription is simple. You don’t have to contact customer care to do so. Here are the steps to follow:
You can also get in touch with customer care to cancel your subscription.
US Search – Data Accuracy
How accurate is the search data generated by US Search? That depends on whom you ask. Many users complain about the lack of details provided in the reports. Others have nothing but good to say about the information supplied.
From our research, US Search does a better job than average of locating people’s information. Their records are detailed and up-to-date, which is not always the case if you hire a background-check company.
Occasionally, US Search will mess up and send you details about the wrong person. If that happens to you, you can ask for a refund. They may issue you a full refund or give you credit in the form of free searches.
Note that US Search falls short when asked to locate phone numbers, email addresses, relatives, and associates. They either don’t find any information or dig up something inaccurate. It’s better if you pick another service for this.
US Search – Customer Service
How good is the US Search customer service? They have a good FAQs section with to-the-point answers to customer queries. You can get answers about reports, accounts, billing, services, subscriptions, and canceling your subscription.
If you don’t find what you’re looking for, you can contact the US Search customer care via phone. You also have the option to email them: [email protected]. If you call, make sure to do it between Monday-Friday, 6AM to 6PM Pacific Time.
They don’t have a 24/7 hotline, though, nor do they have a mobile app. Also, their customer service can be snippy, especially if you’re trying for a refund. Expect them to dig their heels in and refuse even legitimate refund cases.
US Search Alternatives
How to Use US Search
Want to try out US Search? First, you’ll need to decide whether you want a single report or multiple reports. If you want multiple reports, you’re better off purchasing the monthly subscription we mentioned earlier.
Note that the monthly subscription only gives you access to unlimited People Search and Reverse Phone Lookup reports. If you want other reports, you have to pay for each of them separately. All in all, it can set you back by quite a bit.
To use US Search, simply navigate to the website. There, choose the service you want to opt for at the top. Your options are all the services we mentioned before. Alternatively, you can choose to sign up for an account.
Signing up for an account is free. You need to provide them with your full name and email address. You also need to create a unique password. After you’ve signed in, you’ll be asked to purchase subscription to generate a report.
How it Works
Wondering how US Search works? They use a proprietary algorithm to comb through public records available online. What records do they search through? That depends on the records available and the service you opted for.
Note that US Search can’t search offline records or records not yet uploaded to the internet. It also can’t give you access to records unavailable to the general public. The website is compliant with FCRA regulations.
USSearch.com – The Good, the Bad, the Average
Is US Search worth your time? Here’s a breakdown of their pros and cons:
Our Verdict – You Get What You Pay For
US Search generates high-accuracy reports, provided you’re willing to shell out the moolah. Using their various services for multiple searches will cost you a fortune, but at least you’ll get the information you were after.
Note, though, their pricing policy isn’t exactly transparent. If they charge you more, you may have to file a transaction dispute complaint with your bank.