Monday, August 20, 2012

I know where you live: using public record to find addresses

So the other day I was introduced to A great project taking advantage of those that use the geolocation feature in twitter to broadcast the coordinates of their house. That got me thinking about other ways that this can be done.

Thanks to my wonderful wife, I learned a while back that counties keep records that are often searchable online (property records, marriage records, etc.). Hmm, I wonder if we might be able to use this information to track someone down...Let's find out!

For this exercise I decided to grab a random stranger from one of my Facebook friends. For simpleness, let's call him Bruce. Everybody say hi to Bruce.

It says here that bruce lives in a certain city in Colorado...great! A quick google search says that Bruce lives is in Larimer County. Now let's see if Larimer County has an online accessible database for property records...

Yup, looks like they do! If the county didn't, you'd still be able to get this information, you'd just have to call and possibly pay a fee depending on what you requested.

Ok, so back to Bruce...Searching for property records using Bruce's name let's see what pops up.

Well, there we go. We were able to track down Bruce's address!

Now, this won't work in every instance. If someone rents then the original owner will show up in the property records. Also, sometimes the house will be in the spouse/parent's name (depending on the target obviously).

Just a simple way to take your stalking...err "tracking skills" to the next level. If you want a more "hacker" type approach, try using NAT pinning to find the external MAC address of their router and use geo-location to find them instead (3 part series, very good stuff).


  1. Dan, you have brilliantly explained the public records search in your is a good resource for finding someone's location.

    1. Thanks for the positive feedback! It's always good to hear that the information is helpful.