A phone lookup, or reverse phone search, is the act of querying a reverse phone directory to retrieve details about a particular phone number. Individuals or companies that apply for phone numbers are mandated to provide essential information such as full names and addresses. As such, anyone who receives a call from an unknown number can use reverse phone lookup to answer the question “who called me?”
What are West Virginia Phone Numbers?
West Virginia phone numbers are the string of numerical digits that identify telephone users in West Virginia. By 2010, there were about 1.8 million phone lines in West Virginia. About 61% of these lines were provided by landline phone service providers, while about 39% of lines were provided by wireless carriers.
This balance has shifted more in the direction of wireless services in the last 10 years. In a 2018 survey released by the National Center for Health Statistics, only 5.7% of West Virginia households still used only landlines. About 52.6% of households had transitioned fully to wireless phone services, while 13.2% used both landline and wireless phones.
The evolution of the internet has also provided phone users with an alternative option to landlines in Voice of Internet Protocol (VoIP) services. With more than 66.5 million VoIP numbers in use as of 2017 across the United States, landlines are soon to be relics.
Can I Search a Phone Number and Find Out Who it Is?
Yes, you can. It is mandatory for anyone who requests a phone number to register their identification and contact information details with the service provider. These details are stored in carrier directories. Access to this information is available to law enforcement, emergency agencies, as well as members of the public through reverse phone lookup services.
To obtain information about these registrants, phone number lookups can be conducted by name, address, or any other available information. Phone number lookup services are ideal if you receive repeated calls from a suspicious number and wish to learn “who is this number registered to?”
Is there a Free Way to Lookup Someone’s Phone Number?
There are several online applications and services that offer reverse phone searches. Most of these will allow you to perform a phone number search free of charge in order to learn about an unknown number. However, the details these free services give are typically limited in scope.
The best way to obtain conclusive information about an unknown phone number is to pay the fee for a reverse cell phone lookup service. These types of phone lookup services provide more complete information about registrants of phone numbers. However, free services might be used for initial searches before using paid services to obtain more conclusive results.
What are Phone Lookup Services?
Phone lookup services are offered by companies that maintain reverse phone number directories. These directories were originally created in order to help emergency and law enforcement services locate endangered people who called 911. However, phone lookup services eventually became available to private individuals as phone usage increased across the country.
Now, anyone can employ a phone lookup service to find the information attached to a particular phone number. Phone lookup services have grown in popularity as phone users embrace such services as Caller ID. With Caller ID, people can see the numbers calling them and are, more likely, able to identify the callers.
Due to these innovations in the telecommunications industry, phone call security has generally improved. Caller ID enables recipients to identify suspicious phone calls and reject them without having to answer the phones. Phone lookup services also make it possible to learn the details behind phone numbers, making it difficult for fraudsters to perpetrate their crimes anonymously.
Is Reverse Phone Lookup Legal in West Virginia?
West Virginia does not restrict the use of reverse phone lookup searches. The state recognizes the usefulness of these tools and allows anyone to use them to identify strange callers. This is an important step to avoiding phone scammers and reporting phone stalkers. Like other states, West Virginia does not have specific laws ruling on the legality of phone number lookup services, but it considers their use legitimate as long as they operate in accordance with the state’s laws. This means that the state considers using reverse phone lookup for criminal activities illegal. Similarly, it is illegal to use lookup services for civil offenses, including harassing and stalking others.
West Virginia also requires operators and users of reverse phone lookup to identify unknown callers while respecting their privacy. No one can use these tools to unearth confidential information without the appropriate consent. Legitimate phone number lookup search providers are unlikely to disobey West Virginia’s privacy laws as they only serve information extracted from records readily available to the public.
What Information Can You Get from a West Virginia Phone Number Lookup Search?
When trying to identify an unknown caller with a West Virginia phone number lookup search, you can expect to get the following details about them:
These pieces of information are usually taken from carrier databases containing information provided by subscribers when registering their phone numbers. Therefore, they may not be the most current or accurate records for these phone users. If the information provided by a free reverse phone lookup search is not enough to identify an unknown caller, consider signing up for a paid lookup service.
Phone number lookup services charging one-time fees or subscription fees can access more sources than free searches. They can find up-to-date information and are capable of recognizing a lot more phone numbers. Using paid services, you are more likely to find phone users that have changed their names, addresses, and genders since they registered their phone numbers. These services can also deliver recent photos of search subjects and confirm career changes.
Just as they can dig deeper, paid lookup searches can also cast a wider net when looking for information. They can search the public records of West Virginia courts, law enforcement, and other government agencies to find documents in the public domain. Such details are useful for confirming the claims of unknown callers and deciding whether they are trustworthy or not.
What is a VoIP Number?
VoIP numbers are telephone numbers that are used via active internet connections instead of traditional phone lines. Voice over Internet Protocol gives individuals the ability to make calls using VoIP numbers from anywhere in the world, provided they have active internet connections. With these numbers, users also have the ability to make video calls and send text messages.
This internet-based technology has made calling and connecting to others more convenient. However, it has also provided the tools for phone scammers to pull off more scams with fewer chances of repercussions. Fraudsters were once limited to making calls from numbers that could be traced or identified using reverse phone searches. However, VoIP technology now provides the ability to use numerous U.S. phone numbers - none of which can be tied to particular persons or addresses.
The relative ease involved in perpetrating phone scams using VoIP services necessitates extra caution when receiving phone calls, even from familiar-looking numbers. A list of best practices for detecting scam calls is available on the FTC website, which can prove invaluable for avoiding VoIP phone scams.
What is a West Virginia Phone Number Area Code?
Area codes in the United States represent different regions in each state under which phone numbers are registered. Area codes were introduced in 1947 when the Bell System implemented the North American Numbering Plan (NANP). The NANP was introduced in an effort to unify phone systems across the United States while accounting for increases in population. In West Virginia, there are two area codes for the entire state.
Over the last century, the activities of NANP have been supervised by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). The FCC appoints the NANP Administrator, which is in charge of assigning the numbering resources provided by the NANP. Each state is granted autonomy to implement and maintain numbering resources assigned to them but must ensure that guidelines are strictly followed. In West Virginia, the Public Service Commission implements and maintains assigned numbering resources. They also update residents about any changes to the area codes in the state.
What is a West Virginia Phone Number Prefix Code?
Prefix codes, or central office codes, are the three digits that come after area codes in telephone numbers. Consider the West Virginian number (304) 651-1708, for example:
- 304 represents the area code
- 651 represents the prefix code
When an American phone number is making or receiving an international call, the 10-digit code takes on an extra digit, such as in as +1 (304) 651-1708 where:
- +1 represents the country code
- 304 represents the area code
- 651 represents the prefix code