National Skip Tracing Month

A Map to Online Skip Tracing Data

  • Written by Joshua Fluegel

There is no correct way to scour the Internet for data on a consumer. The troubling thing about this is that means there isn’t exactly a defined wrong way to do it either. Does a particular website have accurate data? Does this other one charge too much for the data it supplies? Am I breaking the law by using this website for this reason? All of these are questions that need to be answered on top of the burdensome task of locating a skip. The following websites are resources a collection professional/skip tracer may want to include in its tracing efforts.

Basic Search

This first group of websites range from the obvious to the less-known. These are often the first stop in a tracer’s pursuit of a skip.

Social Media

Social media websites are vast and continually changing pool sources. This works to both its advantage and disadvantage; there is a lot of information there but who knows how valid it still is as the skip may have moved his or her focus to another forum. The demographic for each of these websites varies so a marketing mind would be beneficial. •

Government Sources

Several of these websites can come in handy a little further into a trace. Immigrations and Customs as well as the Bureau of Prisons give a tracer the opportunity to quickly search for a skip. Other sites listed here provide lists of government sites that could prove helpful when looking for information on domestic and international skips.

• •

• - U.S. Immigrations and Customs.

• - The Federal Bureau of Prisons.

• - The Public Access to Court Electronic Records does not directly charge users of the system but does have a $0.10 per page charge as dictated by the Judicial Conference of the United States.

• The website of the skip’s respective county appraisal district can normally reveal valuable information about a skip. Different county’s websites vary in intuitiveness making this task easier or more difficult.

• Visit the website of the skip’s respective secretary of state to perform a UCC-1 (uniform commercial code) search and request a financing statement revealing if the skip has financed property, what the property is, and corresponding information about the skip. There is normally a charge but the resulting documentation can be very enlightening.

Miscellaneous Sources

The following websites are a few more a collection professional should consider when looking for data on consumers. These sources can lead a collection professional to additional websites where they may discover additional useful sources. Some of these are free, some of them cost, and some offer a limited number of free searches.

• - A user receives seven free basic searches in a 24 hour period.

• [Notes the caps]

Paid Services

If automation and speed are paramount, the use of a skip tracing vendor could be the right choice. Several of many options are listed below.

• - IDI

• - LocateSmarter

• - Melissa Data

• - MicroBilt

• OneClick-Data

• PDJ Services

• Thomson Reuters

• - VeriFacts