Ever wondered what happened to that old crush you had in high school? Trying to locate that guy who still owes you $10 in lunch money? Looking to hook up with the people who used to mean something in your life, or you've lost touch with? Here's a few methods describing how to find people for free, just a little effort on your part.
The first and most effective place to find people for free is one of the big social networking sites such as Facebook, MySpace and Friendster. If you're looking for ex-coworkers or people in a specialized field, job specific social networking sites sites such as Linkedin could be more effective because they focus on professionals.
There are two methods for using these two sites. The first is to simply do a search for your friends name. Remember that women's last names change if they marry, so if you don't find the person with a first/last name search, you can search with just the first name. This is more work, but can often find results where other searches fail.
The second, and more effective method how to find people for free, is to create an account and put yourself up there. It's free, so sign up for as many of these sites as you want. Put your whole name up there, where you went to school, jobs you have had, and interests. Make sure to include a picture that will be recognized as you, as most people only check profiles that show who they're dealing with. That way if someone is looking for you as well, you'll be available for them to find. As a caution, be sure to avoid leaving details such as phone numbers, your home address, or anything else that could be used to either stalk you or steal part of your identity. Wait until you've made contact and verified that they really are the person you're looking fro before exchanging such information.
Another search tool is a straightforward Google search. Type their name in to Google and see what comes up. Many people have set up family pages to share family photos or other information. If they have very common name, also include other details like hometown or a school name in the search. Often this will bring up class reunion results which can be an excellent way to track down old school-mates.
The last method is checking phone listing sites. This can be best if you know first and last name as well as the city they're located in, but there will be little detail to go on to verify that you've got the right person. But it could give you clues to help you track the person down.
When doing searching for old friends on the internet, be wary of scams. There are sites who will charge money for doing exactly what is described here. Also, don't use dating sites to find old friends. People will often use aliases, and you must pay a fee to access most features allowing you to see people's full profiles or contact them. Besides, there are many dating sites to choose from, so the chances of finding the person on that particular site slim to none.
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