Learn the Way to Find People's Email Addresses

5 Tips for Finding Anybody's Email Address

Man looking through a keyhole.
John Wieringa / EyeEm/GettyImages

When you accidentally trash an email and desperately want to contact the sender, you need to track down the person's email address pronto. Whether the email was from a business contact or an old high school friend, tracking down someone's email address may involve some Sherlock-level deduction.

The more information you have about the person, the better. Try these five strategies to find the email address you need. These sites and tips are also helpful when you're looking for a way to contact someone you haven't heard from in years, such as an old college roommate or a co-worker from your first job.

of 05

Use Social Media

Browsing through pictures on a phone

Searching Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or LinkedIn could lead you to the email address you seek.

Search each of these social media websites directly to find users. Details such as age, high school, company, or hometown—if you know them—are particularly helpful on social media sites.

Even if a person's page isn't public on Facebook, users sometimes allow their email address to remain public, so someone who isn't a "friend" on the site can still contact them.

of 05

Use Web Search Engines

Close up of silhouetted male hand typing on laptop keyboard
Andrew Brookes/Getty Images

Sometimes a web search can help you locate someone's email address. Use a large and extensive search engine such as Google to garner the best results.

Putting the person's name in quotes narrows the search to result with both names. However, if the individual you're looking for has a common name, like "John Smith," you're going to need some additional information.

You could launch a search, like this: "John Smith" + "Brooklyn, New York" + "Class of 1992." The more information you have, the better. If you know where the person works, the high school or college attended, or age, be sure to add that information to your search terms.

of 05

Search the Dark Web

Laughing architects at conference table in office.
Thomas Barwick/Getty Images

It may have a scary name—Hidden Web, Invisible Web, Dark Web—but it contains a treasure-trove of information if you know where to look. There are plenty of less-well-known search engines that are designed to search the Dark Web, including Internet Archive Wayback Machine, Pipl, Zabasearch, and others. Some require registration, and some may offer only limited information without a fee. Remember where you are and don't be eager to enter your payment information.

of 05

Check Web Directories or White Pages

Phil Ashley/Getty Images

From public records to the white pages, there are email address directories that you can find on the internet. Once on these sites, such as Whitepages, you can use search engines that help you find an individual's email address. Web directories have been shown to be fruitful in searches.

It's helpful if you know the city and state where a person lives or works. 

of 05

Guess Somebody's Email Address

Cup and balls guessing game.
Peter Dazeley/Getty Images

Most organizations do not let people choose email addresses freely but instead assign them by name. You can take advantage of that by assuming the email address using some syntax guessing. Of course, you have to know where the person works.

Try separating the individual's first and last name with a period. If you look at a company's email directory online and everyone's email starts with their first initial and the first six letters of their last name, you can try this combination.

For example, if the addresses on the company website are all in the format firstinitial.lastname@company.com, John Smith's would be j.smith@business.com.

However, if you see on a company's website that john.smith@company.com belongs to the CEO, it's likely that employee email addresses follow the same format, so the email address for someone named Emma Osner would be emma.osner@company.com.