Reverse phone search, or phone number lookup, refers to the process in which an individual can discover more about the person behind a phone number. Because paperwork and other information are required to be provided when being granted a phone number, it is possible to learn more about the individual calling you simply by using the phone number they used to call.
What are Texas Phone Numbers?
The landscape of phone numbers, carriers, and users has changed significantly over the last 20 years. In 2020, the percentage of homes with only cell phones surpassed those with landline phones. According to data from the US Broadband Association, 8% of US homes have landline subscriptions, while 65% are wireless only.
Meanwhile, the 2019 report from the National Health Interview Survey (NHIS) shows that 67.9% of Texas households use wireless phones only, while landline-only households were as low as 2.5%, indicating that landline subscriptions are in their waning days.
As of the year 2020, the United States and Texas had 5 major phone carriers, which include Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint, and US Cellular. Percentages of market share for each of these companies are approximately:
- AT&T with 39.9%
- Verizon with 29.2%
- T-Mobile with 16.4%
- Sprint with 13.3%
- US Cellular with 1.2%
Besides landlines and wireless carriers, Voice of Internet Protocol (VoIP) services are also increasing in popularity. As of 2015, the use of VoIP numbers for both business and personal applications has increased from 34.2 million in 2010 to 84.5 million. Today, there has been a further increase to over 118 million in 2018.
Can I Search a Phone Number and Find Out Who it Is?
The simple answer is yes. Essential information, such as name, address, and contact information, is required when registering a phone number. Therefore, anyone can use reverse phone lookup services to perform a phone number search and find out who is behind the phone. There are several methods for doing this and can include phone number lookup by address or by name, or by using a phone number lookup to find a person's address, name, or other information. When you receive a suspicious phone number lookup services are available to help shed some light on the caller. However, phone scams that are common often utilize the ability to fake the phone number that appears on the receiving end. This means it is difficult to answer the question of “who is this number registered to.”
What are Phone Lookup Services?
With the rapid growth of the internet and extensive allocation of phone numbers, phone number lookup services have become a lot more common. Caller ID allows every telephone user to know which number is calling before they even pick up the phone, and this has led to increased telephone security. However, as telephone security and knowledge grows, so have the efforts of telephone scammers.
Using internet-based voice over internet protocol (VoIP) services, the ability to trick a caller ID into showing a false number, and tools to route a phone call through an unsuspecting victim’s phone, phone scams are just as prolific as ever. Understanding what to look for when identifying a phone scam has never been more important, and understanding how scammers use VoIP, false phone numbers, area codes, prefix codes, and subscriber information is critical to avoiding scammers and robocaller.
What Information Can You Get from a Texas Phone Number Lookup Search?
A reverse phone search can provide the following details about the individual registered to the phone number submitted:
- Full name
- Full address
Paid reverse phone lookup services may also return subjects’ records that are in the public domain. Some will search social media to unearth up-to-date details about the individuals linked to phone numbers submitted by users.
Summarily, phone number lookups in Texas, like in many jurisdictions, play a pivotal role in various fields, including personal, business, and especially criminal justice scenarios. In the criminal justice system, such lookups help law enforcement agencies to track, identify, and correlate individuals involved in criminal activities. A phone number can link a suspect and a crime, providing crucial evidence for a case. For Texas inmate searches, phone number lookups become particularly relevant when cross-referencing phone numbers and trying to establish connections to other potential suspects. They shed light on a broader network when trying to ascertain an inmate's associations or prior contacts.
What is a VoIP Number?
A phone call is, in essence, a transfer of data across long distances, which is the same principle used by the internet. Early internet connectivity came to the United States via phone lines, and VoIP(Voice over Internet Protocol) is phone use coming full circle to, in turn, utilize the internet. When a VoIP service assigns a number, it is assigning it to the individual instead of a specific phone line.
VoIP technology can support texting and video calls just as with a standard phone line and can utilize expansive data networks rather than traveling through traditional and somewhat outdated copper-wire infrastructures. Essentially, VoIP is the future of phone calls, as traditional direct phone lines and calls are made obsolete by the efficiency and breadth of the world wide web.
As usual, phone scammers are moving right along with the new advances introduced by VoIP technologies. Because VoIP numbers are assigned to an individual, there is no way to perform a phone number lookup and no location data associated with the number as there is with traditional phone numbers. As long as a stable internet connection exists, a scammer can call from anywhere in the world with an American phone number. Further, multiple devices can be linked to the VoIP number, meaning nothing related to the device, such as the IMEI number, can be tracked or associated with scam calls. VoIP numbers can be created and destroyed in a matter of minutes, and multiple phone calls can be made simultaneously.
Because VoIP phone scams can be so difficult to detect, it is recommended to use caution when answering an unexpected call, even when the number is known. Some of the FTC recommended best practices and tips to detect a spam caller, VoIP or otherwise, can be found below.
What is a Texas Phone Number Area Code?
Area codes were implemented in the 1940s as part of the North American Numbering Plan by the Bell Phone Companies, American Telegraph and Telephone (AT&T) as a means to unify the decades-old preexisting varied local numbering system and simplify calling between regions and cater to a growing population.
Area codes identify geographic regions such as a city or different parts of a state and are currently regulated by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). The North American Numbering Plan Administration (NANPA) is under the administration of the FCC. The FCC gives each state the authority to make decisions on the introduction of area codes within its borders. In Texas, the Public Utility Commission (PUC) has the responsibility of managing Texas area codes.
What is a Texas Phone Number Prefix Code?
A prefix code - also commonly referred to as an exchange code or central office code - refers to the first set of digits that occurs in a phone number after the area code. For instance, with the telephone number (234) 235-7856:
- 234 is the area code
- 235 is the prefix code
For numbers that include the country code, the prefix code occurs after the country code and area code. For instance with +1 (234) 235-7856:
- +1 is the country code for the United States
- 234 is the area code
- 235 is the prefix code
Is There a Way to Lookup a Phone Number for Free in Texas?
If you receive lots of calls from specific phone numbers, they may be robocalls or spam calls. You can stop these calls by adding your number to the national or Texas Do Not Call List. Before doing so, you may wish to identify the callers.
There are several services that offer ways to find out who called you and learn some information about a phone number, though none of them will offer all information without some form of payment. Nonetheless, using these services to get some information can be useful when using secondary and tertiary services to expand your research. Using this, you may be able to learn more about an individual, such as their location, their name, and if they have any criminal record.
Is Reverse Phone Lookup Legal in Texas?
Yes. Anyone can use phone lookup services to reveal the identities of unknown callers in Texas. Reverse phone number searches provide phone subscriber details that are publicly available from multiple sources. Websites that provide search engines for reverse phone lookups help users save time by finding the records they need and presenting them in an easy-to-read format.