May 24, 2007

Google PhoneBook - The ultimate reverse lookup directory

Interesting watching CNN this morning as they delved deeper into Google and more specifically, the amount of information they way be collecting about you. Of note, your phone number - this is all the more reason to have an unlisted phone number. Big deal you might think... well, give it a try. My home number is unlisted so it doesn't appear (yet) so I tried banging in the number of a friend... sure enough front and center his name and his wife's name appears at the top of the page with a listing title "Phonebook results". Along with it, their address and a hyperlink to a map which pulls a quick google map with an icon showing the location of their home... this has some people really freaked out!
This from Google... Google has added the convenience of US street address and phone number lookup to the information we provide through our search box. You'll see publicly listed phone numbers and addresses at the top of results pages for searches that contain specific kinds of keywords.
So, what this means is its very easy for anyone to look-up listings for a US residence. Simply add any of the following combinations into the Google search box:
first name (or first initial), last name, city (state is optional)
first name (or first initial), last name, state
first name (or first initial), last name, area code
first name (or first initial), last name, zip code
phone number, including area code
last name, city, state
last name, zip code
There's no specific link to "The Google PhoneBook" although, you can easily have your residential phone and address information removed from the Google PhoneBook at http://www.google.com/help/pbremoval.html

1 comment:

Peter J. Cranstone said...

The point is that I shouldn't have to type in that data and I should be able to opt in/out.

Peter