How to Use the Invisible Web to Find People

Deep web people search engines that help dig up hard-to-find information

The invisible/deep web is full of information not found on the regular/surface web, meaning that a normal web search engine isn't enough to dig up information on someone.

Illustration of a person using a tablet to use melissa, pipl, waybackmachine, zabasearch
Lifewire / Adrian Mangel

Below are deep web people search tools and tips you can use to locate someone you've lost contact with, research an individual thoroughly, etc.

Deep web people finders should be used in conjunction with a people search engine for maximum results.

Wayback Machine

wayback machine
What We Like
  • Archive of billions of web pages.

  • Catalogs books, news articles, memes, etc.

What We Don't Like
  • Vast site is overwhelming.

If the person you're looking for has ever created a website or has information you know was on the web but has been since deleted, you can look up that website via Internet Archive's Wayback Machine, a database of hundreds of billions of pages archived from 1996 to the present.

This is a good way to view hard-to-find information because snapshots of websites—including many that are no longer live on the internet—have been archived here. 


FamilySearch website
What We Like
  • Over 1 billion unique profiles.

  • Search by name, place of birth or death, and birthday or death date.

  • Mobile apps.

What We Don't Like
  • Strangers can view or change family trees.

FamilySearch, one of the largest collection of genealogical and historical records in the world, is primarily a genealogy tracker, which makes it an invaluable deep web people search tool as well.

Type in as much information as you know, and this site will return birth and death records, parental information, and more. Digital preservation, digital conversion, general preservation of records, and online indexing is available here as well, all at no charge 


Zabasearch website
What We Like
  • Search by name with state or phone number.

  • Partial numbers and full addresses in results.

  • No registration required.

What We Don't Like
  • Some users express privacy concerns.

  • Most clicking takes you to another site.

Zabasearch is an extraordinarily effective invisible web people search engine. It pulls details from public records that include court records, country and state records, phone number listings, public transactions, voter registration records, and information that the individuals themselves put online.

This free service is somewhat controversial for the amount of information that it pulls in, but it's useful for genealogy searches. 

U.S. Patent and Trademark Office Full-Text Patent Database

New patent applications file folder

Getty Images

What We Like
  • Search for patents by name or term and field of specialty.

  • View or print full page PDFs of patents.

What We Don't Like
  • Search before 1976 by issue date, patent number, and U.S. classification.

  • Must have information about the patent for an effective search.

If the person you're looking for has ever filed for a patent, you'll find it at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office full-text patent database. For patents filed from 1976 and beyond, you can see the inventor's name and the patent's title, as well as other pertinent information.

Melissa Lookups

Melissa Lookups home page
What We Like
  • Interesting collection of search tools.

  • Useful tools to find information about people.

  • Get 1,000 search credits for free.

What We Don't Like
  • Charges for tiers of credits after free credits are used.

  • Some tools require you to make a user account.

Melissa Lookups offers a wide range of free tools you can use to plumb the deep web for people information. This site searches U.S. addresses, house numbers by ZIP code, IP location, names, addresses, phone numbers, emails, and death information.

This site includes information for people in the US, Canada, Italy, India, Mexico, Singapore, Philippines, Australia, Germany, the UK, and some other locations. home page
What We Like
  • Specializes in searches for people in the U.K.

  • Basic search requires only a name.

  • Advanced options available.

What We Don't Like
  • Doesn't list the source of the data.

  • Registration and credits are required for most listings. contains data on people, businesses and places in the U.K. You can find full names, addresses, age guides, property prices, aerial photos, company and director reports, family records, and corporate information here, all pulled from a number of sources on both the general and invisible web.

Voter Registration Information

VoterView kansas secretary of state results
What We Like
  • Reveals the most recent physical address.

  • Likely more trustworthy than most other methods.

What We Don't Like
  • Usually must know the person's birthday.

  • Might work only in the US, and in certain states only.

  • Might be outdated if they haven't voted recently.

A little known fact is that you can find someone's home address using just their name and birthday. This is possible by looking up the person's voter registration information.

Some states consider vote registration information public record, and if the state has an online tool for finding this information, all you need to do is enter a few details about the person.

For example, if you know the person lives in Kansas, Kansas Secretary of State | VoterView lets you see their home address using their name and birthday. Other states should work similarly, but it's possible you'll need details other than their birthday, or their address might not be public.

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