How to find who, exactly, the person is behind an email address, and why you may want to

There could be a good many reasons behind why you would want to find out exactly who the person is behind an email address, but to begin with, the question is more about how than who. If you are relatively Internet savvy, then you have probably got a head start over many, but for those of you who use the Internet more as a way of life as opposed to a means to earn a living, then many of you may not know where to begin, let alone realise that you actually can find out who the person is behind an email address.

For less common names, turning to social media can be an advantage. In Europe, over 80% of the population uses the Internet, and of these 412 million people, 247 million, just under 60%, have a Facebook account. In the United States, that figure rises dramatically to 78% of Internet users having a Facebook account. We guess it won’t surprise you then to learn that worldwide, there are over 1.7 billion Facebook users!

If the name used in an email account is slightly more popular, you can combine your search on Facebook after you have worked out the location of the email address by checking its IP or Internet Protocol number. An IP number is not dissimilar to a postal or zip code number, if not quite as specific. If you use Outlook for email, for the 2013 and beyond versions, open the email, click on the ‘File’ tab and then on ‘Properties’; you will then see all the information you need in the ‘Internet headers’ section.

You may also find that the person behind an email address has used a nickname, or username in their email address, which is different to their surname. Often they may have created a social media profile with that name, or they have used it on an online forum. Using an Internet search engine such as Google, Yahoo or Bing can help you discover where that username has been used, and there is every chance you may find a profile associated with that username.

Unlike other social media platforms, Facebook does offer a ‘search by email’ facility, which if it matches up to the email address that person uses for Facebook, it will take you straight to their profile. Additionally, there are a number of online tools available which provide varying degrees of results. Emailsearchtool is one, while you can also use to specifically check social media accounts. Of course the simplest and most effective way is to use an email validation service.

As for why you would want to know exactly who the person is behind an email address, well that is a whole different matter. From a personal point of view, it may just be idle curiosity, while from a business perspective, then knowing who the person is behind an email address is only one small part of the deal. Being able to establish the demographic of the person from an online profile could have tremendous advantages for targeted email marketing.

Published: 2017-04-27 22:55:42