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Truthfinder Overview

Truthfinder is a background check service enabling subscribers to search for information on people using an extensive database of aggregated publicly available data. Type in a person’s name and Truthfinder will return any available information associated with the individual, including physical addresses, phone numbers, email addresses, criminal record info, and more.  Using the service is a great way to research a person met on an online dating service or track down old friends you’ve lost touch with.

Truthfinder’s people search service is its key feature and the first thing you see when you visit the site. While many people search websites provide a similar service, Truthfinder also offers a number of unique features, including a host of self-monitoring tools and an “opt-out” option, that set it apart from the pack.

What are Truthfinder’s weaknesses? 

The service shares the same basic weakness as many of its competitors: the limitation of public data. Occasionally, Truthfinder will deliver inaccurate or incomplete information because the public records themselves contain errors or because the facts are simply unavailable. However, Truthfinder is at least as good as any background check service (and definitely beats Google), delivering detailed, thorough results at fast speeds. 

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How does Truthfinder work?

Truthfinder delivers search results drawn from compiled data deriving from scores of public sources, including:

  • Federal, state, and local public records 
  • FBI and local criminal records data 
  • Social media sites like Facebook and LinkedIn
  • Data from private companies. 
  • Financial institutions data
  • U.S. Census data

Yes, any information found through Truthfinder is also available elsewhere, but it’s great to have it accessible in one place.

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Is TruthFinder legit?

Truthfinder is a legitimate company that is transparent about its data sources and services on offer. The webpage explains what Truthfinder can be used for, while also clarifying that it isn’t a consumer credit agency. Truthfinder also notes that the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) makes the use of the service illegal for tenant screening, employee background checks, or determining an individual’s eligibility for a loan or financial aid.

However, there are aspects of Truthfinder that are somewhat deceptive, such as the lack of clear pricing information on the main page. Additionally, they use a ‘funneling’ technique wherein you must first perform a search in order to get concrete subscription and pricing details. This technique is used by many background check websites and it only hurts Truthfinder’s legitimacy.  

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Key Features

People Search

Truthfinder’s most popular feature, the people search, is exactly what it sounds like: type in a person’s name, and receive a detailed report with extensive information drawn from a wealth of public sources. 

What info does it return?

A full Truthfinder report may contain the following information about an individual:

  • Names and aliases
  • Date of birth
  • Education history
  • Phone numbers
  • Email addresses
  • Job history
  • Possible relatives
  • Address history
  • Location information
  • Criminal record
  • Possible assets
  • Sex offender status
  • Social media accounts
  • Photographs

Does it work?

For the most part, yes. Of course, it’s unlikely that a single search will return all of the above information. However, you’ll be surprised at the depth of Truthfinder’s reports: the service certainly delivers on its promise of full background checks. Yet, it is important to keep in mind that information found using the Truthfinder people search will not be 100% accurate and shouldn’t be treated as such.

Dark Web Scan

This feature purports to scan thousands of dark web data points to check if a subscriber has been the victim of identity theft or part of a large data breach.  The dark web scan is provided in partnership with Experian.

What info does it return?

Truthfinder’s dark web scan will tell you if your personal information or credit card info has been used illegally, or if your personal information has been compromised as part of a data breach. 

Does it work?

While none of our searches using the feature returned any information about potential data breaches or cases of identity theft (thankfully), customer reviews on BBB claim that the dark web search works as it’s intended. Considering how frequently people use credit cards to purchase items online or type in their personal information to register for websites, this is a standout feature for Truthfinder. 

Criminal Records Search

Search a database of criminal history data drawn from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and other federal and state law enforcement agencies. Despite the fact that criminal records are included in the results of a standard Truthfinder people search, rendering the search somewhat extraneous, it’s nevertheless an interesting feature. 

What info does it return?

The criminal records search will return any criminal history information tied to an individual found in major federal and local criminal databases, including:

  • Arrest records
  • Misdemeanor convictions
  • Felony convictions
  • Traffic offenses
  • Court records. 

Does it work?

Truthfinder’s criminal records search is very effective in delivering criminal history information tied to an individual. However, there are cases where convictions and arrests are incorrectly attributed to a person due to an error or a similarity in names. 

Nevertheless, in light of the difficulty and expense of doing a criminal background check on one’s own in most U.S. states, the criminal records search is one of Truthfinder’s most useful features.  

Public Records Search

Truthfinder includes a dedicated public records search function that scans millions of data points to return any public records in a person’s name.

What info does it return?

 The most common public records delivered through the search are 

  • Arrest records
  • Criminal records
  • Liens and bankruptcies
  • Birth certificates
  • Death records
  • Marriage records
  • Divorce records 

However, Truthfinder may also return far more obscure public records, such as professional licenses and property records. 

Does it work?

Yes, the public records search is very effective. Although the information returned by a search is publicly available, you won’t find it all in one place unless you use Truthfinder or a similar background check service. 

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Additional Features

In addition to its principal functions, TruthFinder makes a number of bonus features and options available to subscribers, including:

  • Reverse Phone Lookup
  • Reverse Address Lookup
  • Self-monitoring features
  • Sex offender search
  • The ability to remove your own report from the Truthfinder database
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TruthFinder Pricing

Despite appearances, none of Truthfinder’s services are free, nor is there a free trial or complimentary search available, so you’ll have to buy a subscription in order to experience what the service has to offer. 

Unfortunately, Truthfinder isn’t totally clear about its pricing, either, so we’ve broken down its two basic subscription options for you:

  • 1 Month Membership – $28
  • 3 Month Membership – $78

You’ll save a couple of bucks committing to a 3-month subscription, but the difference isn’t all that great. It’s important to note that your subscription will auto-renew unless you manually unsubscribe, which has caused confusion and resulted in negative customer reviews on sites like Better Business Bureau and Trustpilot.

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Customer Support

Truthfinder’s customer service isn’t as good as that of its competitor, BeenVerified, which operates a call center 7 days a week and quickly responds to customer emails, but it does offer a customer support number on its website as well as several informative FAQs pages that touch on common questions about billing, canceling accounts, and resetting passwords.

We can’t say that Truthfinder excels in the area of customer support, and it isn’t clear about the operating hours of its helpline, but it could also do worse. 

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Excellent people search function that delivers detailed background reports
  • Handy self-monitoring tools keep subscribers clued in on potential cases of identity theft and data breaches
  • Extensive database of public records and criminal records
  • Truthfinder website offers a wealth of useful information on its data collection practices and the appropriate uses for information gathered through its service
  • Offers mobile apps for iOS and Android

Cons

  • Lack of transparency about pricing
  • Reports are occasionally inaccurate or contain falsely attributed information 
  • Confusing user interface
  • Pricey

Bottom Line

Whether Truthfinder is right for you depends on your need for a background check service and are prepared to foot the bill. However, the service excels at delivering detailed background reports and is useful for a variety of purposes. There’s also the fact that, despite its data being publicly available, you won’t find it all in one place (except on other people search websites). 

Although many people simply won’t feel the need to shell out $30 to perform unlimited Truthfinder background checks, the service is competitively priced compared and offers a number of useful services for those that need them.

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Karen
 

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