I lost touch with one of my good friends and I don’t have her address or phone number anymore. Is there any way I can search for that type of information on the Internet?

There are several Web sites available today that can offer up this sort of information. If you’ve ever lost touch with an old friend or even a relative, you can try your chances with an online search through a people database. Doing an online search like this is just like looking through a phonebook, but it’s faster and easier in certain ways.

One of the more popular sites is whitepages.com. This Web site allows you to do a people search or a business search (yellowpages.com is more popular for businesses, but it can work here too). For this tip, we’re just going to focus on the people search. Once you get to the Web site, you can enter in a name. If you know the first name, that’s great, but the last name is required to complete the search. You can then go on to enter a city or a zip code if you know it, or at least a state.

The more information you enter, the more likely your search will come up with exactly who you’re looking for. Otherwise, you may get a long list of people who have the same name that you don’t even know. Once you put in everything you can, click on the Search button. The next page that comes up will hopefully have the current information of the person you’re looking for, but you may have to scroll through a few other names to find the right one. This Web site will give you the person’s address and telephone number.

You can also search for people in other provinces and countries on some of these sites. If you have trouble finding the person, you can try to search by leaving one or more of the fields blank. For instance, just use the last name and the state. That might help pinpoint your search a little more. You can also search for e-mail addresses on some of these sites.

Some other Web sites that may be helpful to you are Infospace and Switchboard.

Now, if you don’t like the idea of people being able to search for you, do a search on yourself and use the Update/Remove feature on any of these sites. It can be scary to some people knowing that others can find your information, but it is a handy thing to use if you’re in a bind and need to find someone’s address or phone number quickly.

~ Erin