A reverse phone lookup is a process by which available information about the owner of a phone number is obtained. Anyone who applies for a phone number is required to provide their identity and contact data before receiving one. This information is stored in a user account directory maintained by the service provider. The question “who called me?” can be answered by retrieving the user information for the phone number in question with a reverse phone search.
What are Michigan Phone Numbers?
Telephone services in Michigan have evolved a lot since 2000 with changes in communication technologies, service providers, and user preferences. There were 7.01 million landline phone subscribers in the state in 2001. This figure dropped to 3.34 million in 2011 and even further to 3.08 million landline users by 2012.
In 2014, the governor signed the landline phone bill into law. This bill permitted telephone carriers to retire the plain old telephone service (POTS) in any area of Michigan. This effectively signaled the beginning of the end of the landline era in the state. By 2018, a CDC survey estimated that 57.3% of Michiganders were using wireless-only phone services, while 4.7% were still using only landlines.
As landline usage has declined, Voice of Internet Protocol (VoIP) services have followed wireless carriers on the upward rise in usage. In 2012, there were at least 1.35 million VoIP lines in use by Michiganders. As of 2020, almost 30 VoIP service providers are catering to businesses and individuals in Michigan.
Can I Search a Phone Number and Find Out Who it Is?
Yes, you can do that. Everyone who registers a phone number in Michigan is required to provide essential information about themselves. This includes information such as their names, addresses, and other contact details. These details become available using reverse phone lookup services to identify owners of unknown phone numbers.
Phone lookups can be conducted in various ways. These include providing the lookup service with a phone number to learn the person’s name, address, or any other useful information. They can also be performed using an individual’s address or full name to retrieve a phone number.
If you receive a call from a suspicious phone number, lookup services can provide information about the caller. However, fraudsters can have fake phone numbers displayed at the receiver’s end with the help of spoofing tools. This has made it difficult to obtain an answer when you ask, “who is this number registered to?”
Is there a Free Way to Look up Someone’s Phone Number?
There are different types of phone lookup services that can provide information about the owner of a phone number. Free services enable you to learn some details about a phone number, but essential information might not be available unless you use a paid service. However, the minor details they do give for free can help you build an initial profile of the person who called you. A paid service can then be used to retrieve complete information about the subject of the search.
What are Phone Lookup Services?
Phone lookup services provide access to phone number directories and the personal details associated with them. As phone number allocation has become more widespread, these services have increased in number. With the advent of Caller ID, telephones can display the phone numbers of incoming calls.
Because of this, filtering suspicious calls has become more manageable, and phone security has improved. However, phone scammers have found ways to trick Caller ID and redouble their efforts. Using VoIP services, they can get the Caller ID of a potential victim to display a fake phone number. If you receive a call from a suspicious number, employing phone lookup services can unveil the details about the caller.
Is Reverse Phone Lookup Legal in Michigan?
Yes. Anyone can use reverse phone lookup services in Michigan to identify unknown callers by their phone numbers. Similarly, phone number lookup services can legally operate in the state. Michigan does not have specific laws ruling on the legality of reverse phone lookups or make provisions for regulating the operations of entities that provide these services.
However, it expects both users and providers of phone number lookup searches to abide by the laws of the state. This means that it is illegal to use reverse phone lookup for the purpose of stealing money or confidential information from the residents of Michigan. Similarly, the state will prosecute anyone that uses reverse phone lookup to harass or harm its residents.
Reverse phone lookup services operating in Michigan must not flout the state’s privacy laws. This means that they can only offer publicly available records to their users. These search providers can serve information available in the public domain whether they are freely available or offered for certain fees by public and private organizations gathering those records.
What Information Can You Get from a Michigan Phone Number Lookup Search?
The four key pieces of information provided by any reverse phone lookup search are:
- Full name
Most phone lookup free services can provide these four details about unknown callers from their phone numbers. These details are usually extracted from carrier databases from records submitted by phone users when registering and activating their phone numbers.
Paid reverse phone lookup services can access other databases to provide more details about individuals linked to phone numbers submitted for search. These can access public government records and sift through public posts on social media platforms to get additional information. Besides the name, address, age, and gender, paid services can also show the photos of unknown callers identified as well as reveal public records, where available. Such details are useful for investigating phone scammers, spam callers, and phone stalkers. They also present a more up-to-date assessment of the subject of a phone number lookup search.
What is a VoIP Number?
Voice over Internet Protocol has made it possible to obtain telephone numbers that use the internet as the means of data transfer. This is in contrast to traditional phone lines that use copper wires as the medium for routing phone calls. VoIP numbers are assigned to VoIP service subscribers, and they function in the same way as standard phone lines and can also make video calls and text messages. As traditional phone lines become less popular, VoIP services are increasingly looking like the future of telephony.
Scammers are keeping up with these developments and using them to their advantage. VoIP numbers are assigned to users, not fixed lines in physical locations. This enables scammers to use them to make calls from anywhere in the world and have them appear as local calls to the receivers. VoIP numbers do not have the usual location data associated with traditional phone lines. This makes it difficult for phone number lookup services to identify who the caller is. Furthermore, a single number can be used by multiple devices simultaneously, making it harder to identify a single device being used to run scams.
The rise in VoIP usage, coupled with the difficulty in detecting VoIP scams, increases the importance of being cautious when receiving unexpected phone calls. The FTC recommends best practices and provides tips to identify a spam caller, VoIP, or otherwise.
What is a Michigan Phone Number Area Code?
Area codes are the three-digit codes at the start of North American phone numbers. An area code identifies the area in which a local phone number is located. Previously, a variety of local numbering systems were used across North America, but these systems were incompatible. The North American Numbering Plan (NANP), introduced in the 1940s, created area codes to provide a uniformly compatible system.
The NANP is under the purview of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), which gives each state the authority to implement area codes. In Michigan, the responsibility of creating new area codes falls to the Michigan Public Service Commission.
What is a Michigan Phone Number Prefix Code?
After every area code in a phone number comes the prefix code. This three-digit number is also commonly referred to as the central office code. In the Michigan number, (248) 679-5107:
- 248 represents the area code
- 679 represents the prefix code
A Michigan phone number can also have a country code attached to it if attempting to connect with an international phone number. So if the number above were to receive an international call, the caller would need to dial +1 (248) 679-5107. Where:
- +1 represents the United States country code
- 248 represents the area code
- 679 represents the prefix code