How Do Private Investigators Find People Who Don’t Want To Be Found

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private investigator

Private investigators can find people who don’t want to be found for a variety of reasons. This article will cover how Private Investigators go about their task, and what methods they use to locate the person that doesn’t want to be found. 

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Skip Tracing

First, Private Investigators will attempt to ‘skip trace’ the person that they are trying to find. This means that they will go into government databases and other sources to find information on the person. By implementing skip trace service, private investigators can find a vast amount of information on someone very quickly. This includes their previous addresses, any aliases that they may have used throughout their lives, etc. The more information that is found about a person, the easier it will be for a private investigator to find them.


Once all of this information has been collected, Private Investigators can begin surveilling or watching the target to see if perhaps they are going about their normal activities so as not to raise suspicion. If there is no sign of life after some time, then it may be necessary for the private investigators to do additional surveillance logistic fact-finding, such as determining who the person lives with, where they work (and when), etc. Once all of this information has been gathered, it is much easier for Private Investigators to investigate to find the person that they are looking for. 


Locating a person who doesn’t want to be found in the result of the investigative process. To achieve this goal, Private Investigators employ many different methods and techniques. These can include canvassing neighborhoods, talking with people who may have useful information, running background searches on the target individual, as well as using surveillance. All these methods must be done legally so as not to violate any privacy laws or regulations that would apply if a government agency were conducting the same type of activity.

Once a PI has gathered enough evidence to show that a subject appears to have gone into hiding, they will then begin an investigation to find out why the person wants to remain hidden from view. This usually begins by establishing a motive for why the person would go into hiding. The PI will then use the information they have found while doing their investigation to find the target and finally locate them.

How Do PI’s Locate People?

For PI’s, the key to successfully locating people is best done by piecing together bits of information that are already out there. That’s why PI’s utilize skip tracing, surveillance, and investigative techniques to find people. By piecing together bits of information like previous addresses, family members, etc., Private Investigators can piece together a picture of who the person is and where they are likely to be located.

Once this information has been collected, it is then possible for PI’s to conduct surveillance of the target to see if they are going about their usual daily routine. If there is no sign of life from a location for some time, then the private investigators will usually go into further detail by doing additional research. This is where they would use public records and other databases to piece together a more complete picture of the person that they are looking for.

Conducting Database Searches

Once Private Investigators have put together a profile of the person that they are looking for, it is then much easier for them to conduct database searches. This means that they would enter the name of the subject into public databases to see what information can be found relating to them.

Collecting Evidence

They may also access government records, banking information, credit bureau reports, online social networks, and other sources to piece together any evidence that might play a role in their investigation. For instance, if someone conducted an internet search on their name several times throughout the day, this could indicate that they wanted to hide something from view or go ‘off the grid’. While conducting these types of record checks PI’s must abide by privacy laws and regulations and not conduct any illegal surveillance.

Private Investigators can find people who don’t want to be found by piecing together bits of information that they have gathered through extensive background research. Once the PI has put together a complete picture, it is then easier for them to collect evidence to determine why the person doesn’t want to be found. Once all of this information has been collected, it is much easier for Private investigators to conduct surveillance to locate their target and finally discover where they are hiding.