How to find a long lost friend online

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The internet has opened up a whole new world of possibilities, especially for finding people. In ages past, if you wanted to locate someone such as a long lost relative or an old school friend the process was extremely lengthy and difficult – you had to visit libraries and council buildings and trawl through archives. The process was long and the results were often poor.

Today, however, finding people has never been so easy. We now have at our disposal a myriad different options to find friends and family online. You can literally log on to a computer, open an internet browser and potentially find information on a long lost friend in a matter of seconds! If you need to try and find someone for legal purposes or to simply reignite an old relationship, we have gathered 5 online methods that could help you succeed in your endeavour:

1. Use a search engine

This should be your first port of call as it is the easiest method providing that you have access to the internet. Have you ever actually logged on to a search engine such as Google or Bing and type your own name in? Try it and see what results are returned – you will be surprised. You may think that your personal data is safe, but odds are that if you Google yourself, something relevant to your life will be returned. You can use this premise to search for a lost friend – simply type their name in on Google and see what you can find – if luck is on your side, you could find everything you need from one simple search.

2. Search social media

If Google or Bing yield no results then you can turn to the next best thing – social media. In today’s digital world, most people now have at least one social media profile. We are becoming an increasingly social media driven society and this is making it easier to stay connected and to track people down. Consider searching social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest. Most social media platforms will have a search function – simply type in your long lost friend’s name and see what results are returned. Facebook should be your first platform as this will usually yield the best results.

3. Search LinkedIn

Aside from social media platforms, you could consider searching through LinkedIn too. LinkedIn is a business networking platform that brings professionals together. Recruiters can use LinkedIn to headhunt and look for potential new talent for their workforce and individuals can use LinkedIn to build a network of business links to help further their career. Due to the large numbers of users on LinkedIn, it is a great platform to search for a lost friend or relative. As with social media platforms, simply use the search function and type your missing person’s name in and see what you can find.

4. Contact the GRO (General Register Office)

Did you know that the government actually has a General Register Office? This office deals exclusively with a variety of personal and family records including birth certificates, marriage records, civil partnerships, death certificates and adoption. It is possible to request certificates from the GRO post; if you wish to keep the process online, they have also introduced PDF versions of the documents. Postal certificates cost £9.25 each and PDF versions cost £6.00 – these documents can be ready within 5 working days and are a great way to find information on a long lost friend.

5. Search through electoral rolls

An Electoral Roll is a list of individuals who are eligible to vote in a particular regional area such as a district. Searching through electoral roles is another fantastic method of finding a missing person although they, of course, must have registered to vote. There are websites available such as 192.com that actually allow you to search through electoral roles online. Consider searching for your long lost friend using a service such as this – if they are found, you at least know where they have lived and potentially track them down.

6. Hire an Expert Tracing Agent 

Diem Legal specialise in finding people in the UK for a fixed fee (returnable if they are unsuccessful) they can find anyone in the UK and boast a 96% success rate. Using good old fashioned know-how and investigate work paired with the latest technology and databases they can often trace individuals with a minimum of information.

As you can see, the internet really has provided a host of fantastic methods by which we can search for a long lost friend or family member. If you want to locate someone, then have hope – if you use the five methods above, you have a superb chance of finding them.

Bio: Lewis Murawski is the marketing and business development manager at Diem Legal and Managing Director of Kahootz Media. Need professional help with digital marketing? You can connect with Lewis directly on LinkedIn

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