How Do You Find a Friend on the Net?

Ever wonder if your long lost pal is online? How about if your high school sweetheart is desperately trying to figure out your e-mail address?

Well, worry no more. These sites are dedicated to creating a massive listing of e-mail addresses of as many users as they can.

Acting as an online version of a phone book that lists users all over the world, these services try to provide the most up-to-date information on e-mail addresses and other contact information.

If just finding an e-mail address is more important to you than discovering where they are working or going to school, then the directory Four11 (http://www.four11.com/) would probably be your best bet.

Aside from the huge database, the great thing about Four11 is that you can search for key strings after you become a member.

Say, for example, you want to look for Suzi Smith from your old high school. You can punch in “Suzi Smith” and also enter whatever high school she attended to further define your search.

In order to test the accuracy and speed of these directories, I searched for myself in their directories.

Very egotistical, but it works!

A handful of search providers actually had my e-mail address listed, although I hadn’t submitted it to any of the providers.

Aside from personal e-mail addresses, Four11 also lists telephone and netphone numbers as well as information on government representatives and celebrities.

Who Where (http://www.whowhere.com/index2.html) is another cool database that enables you to search e-mail addresses.

This site also has its own built-in database expander. It provides users with the option to add their e-mail address to its database – to give it that personal touch.

WhoWhere boasts a smaller number of addresses (1 million listings) than Four11’s 10 million, but their advanced search function – including a search by location, school and/or affiliation – is available without becoming a member of the service.

Another wire searcher, The Internet Address Finder (http://www.iaf.net/) has a gigantic listing. As of the date of this article, the page advertised “5,641,957 listings and growing.”

When I searched for my name on this service I suddenly felt like I may become a victim of a stalker who tracked me through e-mail.

I found that they had listed my entire address, including “University Of Hawai`i, 2565 The Mall, Keller Hall”.

I know I spend a lot of time in school but this is ridiculous! =)

Within Internet Address Finder, I could use the key strings to search for first and last name, organization and/or domain

I could also find an expanded listing by searching for the e-mail address itself.

Some of the other cool directories linked to the address search sites included:

If you do a search on any one of these sites mentioned above and come up short, you are given the option to add to their database.

In other words, you can finally be found.

Happy surfing!

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