A Review of the Popular Online Internet Search Program
Following is a review of the Net Detective software program. Please note that we are not the distributor of this program, nor do we recommend using it. Please see our background check section for a list of tools and online services that we recommend for detectives. We’re providing the following for information purposes only:
About ten years ago, Net Detective was one of the most popular private investigator software programs on the internet. The product was advertised all over the internet and claimed that the product could be used to find anyone, run free background checks, and find information and data that regular search engines could not. Hundreds of affiliate websites were packed with misinformation about the product’s capabilities. The websites made outrageous claims like:
- Run free unlimited background checks
- Find the TRUTH about anyone!
- Access your own FBI file
- Find criminal records, marriage and divorce records, and other public records
- Learn how to verify your own credit reports and credit information
- Explore hidden investigation websites that aren’t listed in search engines
- Track down people who owe you money (debtors) for collections purposes
- Investigate your own family history and conduct genealogy investigations
- Verify information on an employment application
The distributor claims that the Net Detective service includes an ever-growing amount of proprietary data and public records from a variety of sources. The current amount publicized on the website is over 1.1 billion records compiled from hundreds of different record sources. They claim that the multiple record sources and databases is what helps make it a unique people search tool when compared to other online sources and detective software. The result is that the search software helps you locate more information about people and find missing persons faster.
In addition to the people search and background check capabilities, the web detective product marketing materials say that a Net Detective login can be used to access an investigator’s “online black book of information”, which consists of intelligence on millions of information resources available online. It suggests that popular search engines like Google or Yahoo index only a portion of the information available online. The majority of the real information is in the hidden sources the average person doesn’t see.
The online tool also includes “how-to” articles that explain how to get additional data and information. The service does not provide access to this information, but does explain the process for accessing the information on your own. Again, this is information that can easily be obtained via a regular search engine, and is likely to be more reliable and up to date.
- Learn how unlisted phone numbers are located
- Learn how to check adoption records
- Learn how to Search for Unclaimed Money and unclaimed funds
- Learn how to get your own Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) file. Includes sample letters and how to read and understand your FBI report
- Learn how to protect yourself from Identity Theft
The product is targeted toward just about anyone. Affiliate marketers (those who resell the product for a commission) put their own twist on the product’s capabilities and customize their content toward their website’s target audience. In reality, the product could be used by anyone to look up addresses and find information. Some marketers suggest that you can avoid hiring a private eye or paying for more expensive background check services by using the product. Other resellers direct their messaging directly toward private investigators, police officers, legal professionals and those in related professions.
We do not view this product as a viable replacement for a real detective. If you are considering hiring a detective, please visit our P.I. Directory for a list of detectives in your area.
Actual Product Capabilities
During our last review of the product, it appeared to offer nothing more than white page search functionality. We were able to run basic address and phone number searches and review a list of results. The results appeared to be similar to that which can be obtained from any free white pages search site on the internet. The distributor suggests that the data includes records from other sources such as public records, voting records, business filings, customer surveys, international phone numbers, and more. Although we were unable to verify these claims, we did not notice that the results were particularly accurate based on the sample address and phone numbers lookups we conducted.
To be clear, the product can not be used for the following purposes:
- Lookup divorce records
- Obtain property records
- Pull public birth records
- Obtain cell phone numbers
- Access court records
- No DMV Records or License plate data is available
- Social security numbers are not available and cannot be searched or verified
Initially, the product was distributed in a software download format, but eventually changed to an online-only service that is accessed via a web browser. Since it is web-based, no software is downloaded or installed on the local computer, tablet or mobile phone. A login ID is issued upon signup and the search tool is accessed via a web browser. Based on our tests and reviews, the products operates with all major web browsers.
The online search software has been sold under many different names. Other than the standard Net Detective, the product has been distributed under names such as: Web Detective, Urgent Detective, and others.
In addition, the product name is often supplemented with a version number or a year such as Net Detective 8.0 or 2013. All of these names refer to the same software tool.
Some competing products have surfaced over the years, which claim to provide access to many of the same tools and data. However, these are simply cheap copies of a cheap product.
Customer and User Feedback
Most affiliate reseller sites are peppered with comments from “real users” who claim they used the service to find an old friend or a long lost love. Although we didn’t attempt to verify these claims, we generally disregard their validity due to the large number of complaints filed with the Better Business Bureau and on consumer “rip off” website that allow people to post complaints about fraudulent products.
eInvestigator.com does not own, sell, distribute or support Net Detective, Net Detective Plus, Web Detective, eDetective, Urgent Detective or any other such programs. The information on this page is provided solely for information purposes. eInvestigator.com makes no claims about the validity of the product information, functionality of the product or the user reviews. Any questions or complaints about the product, it’s use, billing, or technical issues should be directed to the distributor.