How to Find an Email Address Online

See who owns it or find all addresses that belong to someone

Hand holding magnifying glass extending out of computer screen illustration

 

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There are two ways to deal with an email address when it comes to finding someone online: see who owns an email address or find someone's email address when you don't know it.

Finding out who an email address belongs to involves doing a reverse search where you enter the email address to see which names come up as being associated with it. Finding all the email addresses somebody uses requires a people search tool that includes not only their name but also their possible email accounts.

Both email address lookup techniques are possible, but not all people finders include both of them. Below are all the resources you need no matter which camp you're in.

Try a Regular Web Search Engine

If you're trying a reverse email lookup to see who owns the email address, first try entering it into Google or another web search engine.

Reverse email search on Google

Email addresses are so unique that no two people can have the same one, so if you find any hits on that address, it's likely that the page listing the email includes other details about the person.

To find someone's email address with just their name, enter their full name into a search engine and then add some other words to explain that you're looking for an email address.

Google Search for email address

Here's an example:

"john doe" email

Be sure to use quotes around any group of search terms that go together, such as a first and last name or a school or business.

If you're looking for a business-related email address, you might employ some more techniques, such as a site search:

site:lifewire.com inurl:about

Use a Special Search Engine

A general search engine like Google is helpful because it searches lots of websites at once, but there are also people search engines that are built specifically for email address lookups.

Some let you search by the email address to see who it belongs to, and others let you run the search using something else like a home address, name, username, or phone number, and then you're told the email addresses that are associated with that person.

For example, TruePeopleSearch lets you find someone's email address for free with just their name, phone number, or physical address. Once you find the right person, you can see a wealth of information on them, including possible email addresses they own.

TruePeopleSearch email address lookup

BeenVerified isn't free but is another example where you can search for the person a number of ways and then see a list of all their email addresses.

Check the Domain

This won't work for public email addresses like Gmail or Yahoo, but if the email address is unique to a website (i.e., it doesn't come from a free email provider), you can use the last portion of it to narrow down whose email it is.

Consider this email address as an example:

tfisher@example.com

We can very clearly see that after the username and @, the website that hosts the email address is example.com. You could visit that site to see if there's a general contact page that lists employees, one of which might be that one.

Read the Message for Clues

This email address lookup technique is fairly straightforward and should be obvious: read the sender's name! If they have their account set up in such a way where their name is visible when they send emails, you'll see it right away.

If you don't already have an email from the person, send something and ask for a return message so that you can see their name. You could also simply ask in the message who the person is; unless they're being private on purpose, most people should be fine explaining who they are if you have a good reason for asking.

Another way to see who owns the email address is through their email signature. Most businesses require or recommend that employees have their name and other contact details included in the signature.

Email signature example in Gmail

Email signatures are at the bottom of the message. Here's an example:

John Doe
XYZ Company
john.doe@xyz.company
555-123-4567

Not All Email Addresses Are Traceable

Still no luck? If after using all these different email address search tools, you still come up empty-handed, you might have to just give up. Unfortunately, not all email address details are publicly available.