- Easy to use
- Responsive customer support
- Detailed social media search experiences
- Subscription can be cancelled at any time
- Offers free features otherwise paid for on other platforms
- Relatives’ information and city location are given upfront
Solid background checker that occasionally provides inaccurate information and doesn't offer an unlimited search plan
Updated: March 25,2022
Suppose you wanted to find some crucial information on the guy or girl your daughter/son brought home for Thanksgiving. They seem nice, but you just can’t put your finger on what doesn’t click for you. Or maybe that new neighbor keeps stuffing something down a big old incinerator, and you’re not so convinced by the story they told you when they moved it. You deserve to know what’s happening around you, for your safety and that of your family’s.
Luckily, there is a people search company called Spokeo that reviews and makes available important data on the people we come across in our day-to-day lives. Let’s find out if it’s worth your time.
- Name search: Yes
- Phone and address search: Yes
- Criminal records: Yes (with paid plans)
- Real estate records: Yes
- Reverse address search: Yes
- Reverse phone search: Yes
- Social network search: Yes
- Commercial business records: N/A
- Financial and court records: Yes
- Lawsuits: Yes
- Charges a monthly fee to conduct people searches
- Occasionally provides misinformation
- Flat rate for all individual court records
Imagine a sort of people directory, but one with information on people you had no particular ties with. The kind that would give you access to information about anyone, so long as they had a presence on the internet. Wouldn’t that make life much easier? You wouldn’t have to worry about strangers – you could just look them up and know who exactly you’re dealing with. Well, that’s what Spokeo offers its users.
Spokeo reviews personal information provided on the internet through social media platforms, directories, and other databases, and compiles entries on each person. This information is then accessed through a simple search of a name or a phone number. The applications are endless.
Suppose you’re trying to find a distant relative, an old classmate, or even a long-lost love. Or perhaps you run a business, and you want to validate information on partners or clients. That’s what the Spokeo service does — in ways that social media platforms might not be able to.
Data available includes information on backgrounds, phone numbers, email addresses, family information, past addresses, and even criminal records. In this Spokeo Review, we’ll take an in-depth look at Spokeo, why you should choose it ahead of any other people search company, and what to do if you don’t want people to find you on the service.
Founded in 2006, the Spokeo website hosts about 18 million users each month, all searching for one thing – information on people. Spokeo is a people search engine that can help you if you are searching for unknown callers’ info, want to learn more about a potential relationship or business partner, research a new neighborhood, or reconnect with family and friends.
Spokeo reviews its usage policies and prohibits users from crossing certain lines when using its search engine. For one thing, you shouldn’t misuse the information you get access to, but also know when to draw the line when it comes to an individual’s privacy. Spokeo also places restrictions on the purpose of people searches, in accordance with regulation.
When using Spokeo, you should never perform checks on people’s credit score, run background checks on tenants, use it for employee screening, run checks on insurance, or perform any activity prohibited by the Fair Credit Reporting Act.
How It Works
Now that we’ve answered the ‘What is Spokeo?’ question, let’s examine how the service actually works.
From our test reviews, Spokeo operates through a defined pattern, as any serious service provider should. Users gain full access based on their monthly subscriptions or limited access and one-off search for a lesser fee. It is up to the user to decide if they want to do a random search once or pay for a monthly subscription and have access to the information databases at any time. Spokeo also makes provisions for users to pay for multiple months ahead of time and offers additional features for extra fees.
Using Spokeo is simple. You type in the name, email, phone number, or address of your subject in the search bar and get results when there is a hit.
All reviews on Spokeo Membership list two basic options users can choose from: opening a free account or paying a membership fee.
To open a free account, register through the website or the mobile app, and you’ll get access to a number of features, although limited. One prominent feature is the ability to identify unknown callers with a name or a photo. It’s useful for avoiding calls, either from scammers or salespeople, or simply regular calls you’re not interested in.
The paid membership offers full access to the site’s features. These include access to more than twelve billion public records, profile monitoring, notifications for updated information, and information on contacts in personal address books.
This part of our Spokeo review covers the fees associated with using the Spokeo service. How much does it cost to become a full member? Let’s find out.
Spokeo offers a line of business plans called Spokeo Enterprise. There are three business plans, and they cost the following:
- Basic Business Plan: The basic plan costs $35.95 a month and is the most popular plan, considering it’s the cheapest. Most subscribers to this plan only use it for personal searches.
- Professional Plan: This costs $65.95 a month and offers 500 reports on people and businesses, including all their information and records.
- Enterprise Plan: This is the premium plan. It offers a thousand reports for $119.95 per month.
However, our further reviews of Spokeo people search, to our disappointment, revealed that the company is not as straightforward with its basic pricing plans for individual users. Event the answer to the direct question in the FAQ section – “How much does a Spokeo membership cost?” – was somewhat vague, as it only mentioned that it’s “very affordable” and with a “variety of low-cost payment plans available.”
To conclude this section of our review, we are reasonably confident that offering price transparency would be an improvement welcomed by Spokeo’s customers.
Spokeo Customer Reviews
Most user reviews gave pretty much the same verdict: Spokeo works quite efficiently. To check this, we ran searches on selected staff names and found correct information, although some profiles were incomplete.
They take their customers seriously at Spokeo – its BBB rating stands at an A+, indicating favorable responses on the company’s services.
The Help Center
Some of our tests did hit stumbling blocks, though. When this happened, we were pleasantly surprised by the speed and efficiency of the customer service. One of our test reviews was completely boggled with problems from the start, making it impossible to use Spokeo, but we were quite pleased with the rewards we got as compensation when we reported the issue to the help center.
Spokeo Complaints and Reviews
That said, there are some rough edges that customers regularly complain about. These mostly have to do with personal data inaccuracies. We have no doubt that the service is trustworthy and reliable at least 95% of the time. The other 5% is what we attribute to the incomplete profiles in the search results.
Another issue is the automatic billing on the Spokeo subscription. Canceling a subscription was a bit of a war, and it took a call with customer service to finally remove the billing.
The Spokeo opt-out feature is also problematic: Opting out isn’t permanent, and you may soon find your info right back up.
Spokeo Mobile App Reviews
Spokeo.com might be the primary location to access the service, but the company has since diversified its channels, launching a mobile app for users to access its offerings. The app is only available on the Android open-source platform for now, but Spokeo has announced plans to roll one out for iOS users in the nearest future.
The mobile app has a current rating of 4.0 out of 5 from about 2,700 reviews. The app’s primary function is to filter unwanted calls. This is available with all free Spokeo accounts. To do more with the app, like conduct searches on people, users need a paid membership.
There is another thing. The website, Spokeo.com, reviews some features better than the app does. For instance, the app is excellent for barring unwanted calls, but its search features are entirely useless. Also, it’s quite unfortunate that you can’t use the search option on the app without subscribing to a membership.
Despite these drawbacks, the Spokeo app seems to be doing just what it was meant to do for most users. Barring the negatives we mentioned, we found the app possesses a lot more positives, and the ease of use is definitely one of them.
Spokeo Website Reviews
Most users agree that the website has a clean and easy-to-navigate design, so you can easily find your way around with little to no assistance. It is also very fast, so users don’t have to deal with much lag while accessing the site.
On the flip side, the billing information on the site lacks clarity, so it’s difficult to determine how much you are being charged for a service until you are actually charged. There’s also not much information on what happens if you decide to remove your data from the Spokeo database.
Spokeo Cancellation Reviews
What happens if you decide to cancel your subscription to Spokeo?
Quick advice: If you intend to perform just one search, remember to cancel the subscription immediately when you are done with your search. We had countless billing issues, all this because the users are not informed monthly charges will be automatic, even if it’s a one-off search. If you want to cancel your subscription, you can:
- Log in, click on the membership area, and select “Cancel”
- Email customer service for help
- Use the live chat feature to ask for cancellation or account deletion
- Call 1-888-906-0849 (it’s free).
Spokeo Email Search Reviews
Spokeo is considered to be one of the top 20 email search sites on the internet today. The email address is one of the primary details it offers in its searches on people, along with physical addresses and dates of births. It’s a particularly useful tool if you are on the lookout for someone and hope to contact them, especially if your query is related to business and calling is not an available option.
When we tested the Spokeo email search, it turned out accessing the accurate email addresses of our search subjects was pretty easy.
Spokeo Cheating Spouse Reviews
Spokeo isn’t just useful for finding lost relatives or acquaintances; one of its more creative uses is catching a cheating spouse. Some people may want to verify the credibility of someone they know, for example, whether they lead a double life, and Spokeo is the tool to dig it up.
The service helps you discover if your spouse is either married to someone else or is not who they said they were. It tracks social profiles connected to the same names, addresses, and emails, and through this information, distrustful users can follow the digital trail of their significant others. Spokeo’s searches cover over 120 social sites, so no stone is left unturned.
Spokeo Social Search Reviews
Spokeo’s searches also include social media profiles. When you perform searches, along with names, numbers, email addresses, physical addresses, and even family information, the service also gives you access to social media profiles linked to the individuals you’ve searched for. It’s a complete search in its own right, and users can even find out more information they were not previously privy to. It’s particularly handy for users who want to see if a significant other is up to some shady business.
Spokeo Phone Trace Reviews
Spokeo matches identities to unknown phone numbers using billions of phone directory records. Finding out who’s calling or texting you and your family or friends has never been easier.
Spokeo’s Opt-Out Option
If you want to remove your info from Spokeo, so it doesn’t turn up on searches, follow these steps:
- Search for your name, and select the listing you want to remove
- Right-click and “copy link address”
- Go to Spokeo’s opt-out page and paste the copied link
- Provide your email address to receive a verification
- Click the “I’m not a robot” captcha.
This is not a permanent solution, however. As pointed out by numerous Spokeo.com reviews on the internet, your information can still pop up later and on other sites.
Should You Trust Spokeo or Other Similar Services?
Choosing whether to use Spokeo’s services or those of another provider isn’t easy: Dozens of companies offer people search and check services, so it can be tough to decide what’s best for your needs. Luckily, we have a detailed insight into the most reputable providers’ services. Here’s our opinion on some of them compared to Spokeo:
Spokeo vs. Intelius
Intelius is among the most popular background check options on the market, with an A+ score on BBB and tons of positive user reviews. This, however, is not enough to say that it’s better than Spokeo, since that provider also has an excellent score on BBB, and there are lots of positive reviews about the services it provides.
Generally, both providers can do an excellent job if you want basic information about a person. However, Intelius provides more comprehensive reports. This comes as no surprise, since Intelius is a professional-grade background check provider, while Spokeo focuses on providing people search services. Spokeo cheating spouse is probably the only unique service you can get with this provider. Spokeo’s background check is also more expensive than Intelius’, so you need to consider whether your need for these services is worth the price before you opt for them.
Another thing we need to mention is that Intelius offers additional features Spokeo doesn’t. For example, Intelius is equipped with an identity theft protection tool that helps you monitor your private data, credit cards, or other valuable documents. Of course, the service comes at an additional cost.
Spokeo vs. Truthfinder
Both Spokeo and TruthFinder are reasonable solutions for conducting a people search, but there are some important differences between them that can help you make a definite decision. Let’s start with pricing: For one, TruthFinder doesn’t offer free services. If you are lucky enough, you can get one of the company’s occasional special deals that allow you to get one report for free. Otherwise, you’ll always need to pay to use TruthFinder’s products.
TruthFinder is used primarily for conducting background checks to see if a particular individual has a criminal record, and it’s praised for providing accurate and detailed information for this purpose across all states. On the other hand, Spokeo’s reviews don’t instill a lot of confidence – there are many bad experiences with performing this service out there.
Spokeo Recent Upgrades
On the plus side, Spokeo’s team constantly makes improvements to its services. Its data library becomes more and more detailed daily, meaning that the reports you get are becoming more and more accurate and their information more specific.
Recently, they updated their entire website with a new interface and an avatar for every user, but the improvements weren’t merely cosmetic: The reports have also been upgraded. They are divided into sections, so by clicking on each of them you get the initial results with visuals and a search option for getting more detailed information.
Spokeo Customer Support
Different people search reviews and our own experience confirmed that Spokeo has an excellent support service. The agents are knowledgeable, polite, and respond to client questions quickly. If you subscribe to the company’s services, you will get unlimited access to their live chat, email, and phone support.
Better Safe than Sorry
A background check can be necessary for many reasons. However, where most people search engines usually dig deeper and offer more incriminating information, Spokeo frowns upon explicitly using its features to dig up criminal facts on people. It’s great for general information, though, and cheaper than other search engines that provide the same services. User experience is top-level, and the customer service agents are efficient and knowledgeable. General Spokeo ratings and reviews indicate users are overall satisfied with the company’s services.
Yes. Spokeo doesn’t break any laws in gathering its information. It does so through original research on digital records.
Spokeo can give you identity information on individuals about whom you’d like to know more, including their contact information, location history, family members, social media accounts, personal details, wealth data, even their criminal records, although this information is sold separately (it’s not covered by basic report or membership fees).
Spokeo offers a free people search service, but it comes with limited features. Should you need to check someone’s past in detail, the company’s paid services are necessary. Several pricing options are offered, so you’ll find one that fits your needs and budget. Of course, the free service is good if you want to do some basic checks. For example, if you receive annoying phone calls, you can easily find who is disturbing you with Spokeo’s free service.
The free service does give you access to some features, but it’s limited. For full and comprehensive access, you’ll have to choose a paid subscription plan. Spokeo reviews show that the subscription costs are relatively low compared with other services. Just be sure to cancel your membership after performing a one-time search.
You can trust the service. As mentioned earlier, Spokeo’s processes are entirely legitimate. The only issue is with the automatic billing on subscriptions. Many are unaware of the fact, and it can result in unplanned deductions. Other than that, Spokeo is trustworthy.