Using Google

Google is indispensible in a people search, in fact, it's one of the first places you should start!

You can use a little known feature of Google, known to experts as "Google Phonebook". You can use it for a reverse phone number search, or to also look people up in the phone directory.

You have the option of removing yourself from the directory. To find out more, visit our page on reverse phone searching, where we have put up a simple interface to Google with instructions for using the internal Google phonebook. Try it here.

What to enter into Google
Enter This
To Get These Results
"John Smith" John Smith
John Smith Carpenter
Mr. John Smith
John Smith John Smith
Smith John
John William Smith
John Jones, Will Smith, etc.
John the blacksmith
"Smith, John" Smith, John
Taylor-Smith, John
Smith AND John Smith, John
John Smith
John Jones, William Smith, Peter Fay
" TR " AND Jones

(Space in front of 'T' and after 'R')
TR Jones, Jones TR
"TR" AND Jones

(No space in front of T or after R)
TR Jones
Jones, Trenton
Smith NEAR Biloxi Joe Smith
Biloxi, MI

Boolean Search Techniques

(Boolean Operators)

  • AND: retrieves both keywords
  • OR: retrieves either keyword
  • NOT: excludes a keyword (use only at the end of a search string)
  • NEAR: will find documents that have the words in close proximity to each other, i.e. within 20 words
  • “ ”: retrieves only exactly what is enclosed in quotes. This is useful for finding people as shown by the examples in the table above. It is also important to note that when you are searching for an abbreviation, include a SPACE BEFORE AND AFTER THE ABBREVIATION!!!
  • *: This is called a wildcard (just the asterisk) and it will retrieve anything after the asterisk.

Boolean Operators on Different Search Engines

Different search engines view Boolean operators differently

Google is not the only search engine. You can often find different results on different search engines. There are over a hundred search engines listed at "The Search Engine List .com".

For example,

  • Google does not require the use of AND other search engines often do.
  • Google uses | or OR to mean the same thing, others do not.
  • Most search engines have Advanced Search Templates which can make searching VERY easy on that site, especially for new internet searchers.
  • Use the HELP section of search engines!

Advanced Operators

Title Search – searches for titles of web pages

Search Engine Boolean Operator
Google, Yahoo, Ask, or AOL
AltaVista, Lycos, or MSN

Notice: There is no space after intitle: and before resume, but there is a space before "cpa".

This search would return CPA results which had the word resume in the title.


Host or Site Search (x-raying)
Enables you to x-ray and search websites, like “googling” a website

Search Engine Boolean Operator
Google or Yahoo:

Demonstration with Google Search:

Go ahead, try it! This search box actually works via Google.


Reverse Mobile (cellphone) Number Lookup

Start Your Mobile Search Now!



Reverse Telephone Number Lookup

Start Your Preliminary Search Now!


Enter an area code and telephone number (for US phones only) to begin a "Reverse Telephone Number Lookup".