learn to track

How to Track a Phone Number?

How To Track A Phone Number

Have you ever misplaced your cell phone somewhere in your house and can’t remember where you put it? Or maybe you’re worried about your kid’s location since they haven’t answered your phone calls?

In today’s increasingly interconnected world, the ability to track a phone number is not just a convenience—it can be a critical tool for maintaining safety, security, and peace of mind.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll take you by the hand and dive into the world of phone number tracking.

No, this isn’t a course in becoming a super-sleuth. But it is a primer on leveraging modern technology to help manage those minor (and sometimes major) phone-related headaches in life.

Get ready to demystify the process of phone number tracking as we explore the means to locate a device or trace a call.

Tracking a Cell Phone with Spying Apps

Tracking A Cell Phone With Spying Apps

A spy app is a hidden tracking tool installed on a smartphone to monitor its location and activities. But with a spy app, you’ll need more than just the cell phone number.

Usually, you’ll need physical access to the target device to install the spying app.

Once installed, it uses the phone’s in-built GPS location tracking to pinpoint the target phone’s exact coordinates and relays this information to a remote server accessible by the app’s user.

Typically, the user can track the target phone’s location on a map (similar to Google Maps) through a secure online dashboard.

Spy apps can run in stealth mode, making them invisible to the phone’s owner. They also track other information, like call logs, messages, and social media activity, providing a comprehensive snapshot of the target mobile device.

However, it’s crucial to understand that using spy apps without the knowledge and consent of the person you’re tracking may be illegal and unethical.

If you want to learn more about these apps, we’ve done a comprehensive list of the 21 Best Phone Tracker Apps to Use in 2023.

Tracking a Cell Phone Location with Online Phone Lookup Services

An online phone lookup service often called a reverse phone lookup, can provide information about a phone number, including the phone’s location.

When you input a cell phone number, the service provider will sift through its vast databases that compile public records and online data to fetch associated information.

However, it’s important to note that these services typically don’t provide real-time location tracking.

Instead, they offer details about the location history linked to a landline or the geographic area linked to a mobile phone number.

The precision of the cell phone’s location provided can vary, ranging from an exact location of a specific street address for landlines to a city or state for mobile phone numbers.

It’s important to note reverse lookup may also be illegal and unethical without the knowledge and consent of the target’s phone owner.

Tracking a Cell Phone Location Legally

Whether you’re using a reverse phone lookup service provider or an app, you’ll probably need consent to have your activity considered legal. With that said, there’s a list of non-intrusive methods to track someone’s location by their cell phone.

For Android Phones:

1) Google Maps App

Google Find Mydevice Dashboard Screenshots

Google Maps can track a cell phone if the owner of the phone number is logged into their Google account, which will then allow us to see all the places they have visited.

Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Go to your Google Play Store
  2. Download Find My Device
  3. Go to Find My Device and activate the app
  4. Choose Find My Device web
  5. Type in the Gmail associated with the phone number
  6. Check the target device location on the map

NOTE: The target device needs to be on and with access to the internet (Wi-Fi or mobile data) to respond.

2) IMEI Number Phone Tracker

IMEI Number Tracker

IMEI ( International Mobile Equipment Identity) works like a phone’s identity.

Every cell phone has a unique 15-digit long IMEI number. A cell phone’s location can be tracked with an IMEI tracker app or a web service provider offering IMEI tracking.

Here are a few options:

3) Reverse Phone Lookup Service

Reverse Phone Lookup Services

With this reverse lookup tool, tracking phone numbers is straightforward. Simply access the service, enter the number you wish to trace, and the built-in search engine does the hard work to find the associated phone.

Here’s a list of three reverse phone lookup services:

4) Phone Tracking & Spying Apps

Phone Tracking And Spying Apps

A spy app could be your optimal choice if you want a reliable solution to pinpoint a phone number, coupled with the benefit of procuring further details like contact information linked to the target device.

For recommendations on the top spy apps, please refer to the article we linked at the start of this piece.

The options there have been carefully selected for their performance and ease of use.

NOTE: Except for Google Maps Find My Device, every other method listed will also work on iPhone. As expected, the iPhone has its own equivalent to this first application, which we’ll show below.

For iOS Devices:

1) Find My

Apple Find My

Find My is Apple’s version of Find My Device and allows tracking a phone number location and wiping out or blocking targeted phones.

To track a cell phone this way, you need to make sure the target phone number is associated with the iPhone you want to track.

Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Go to Find My on your iPhone
  2. Associated your iCloud details to Find My
  3. Access Find My webpage
  4. Initiate the service and type in your Apple’s ID
  5. Select the device you want
  6. Check its location on the map

There are two other methods you may want to try if you want to track a cell phone, which is searching for information online (social media can easily deliver the whereabouts of a phone number) or you could just call your provider (or mobile network provider) and ask for help to track a phone number of yours.

You have two more options for tracking a cell phone.

First, you can search online, as social media often provides clues about a phone number’s location.

Second, you can simply ask your service provider to help track your phone number. Depending on where you live and your service provider’s policies, you may be able to track your number.

NOTE: Some blogs might suggest using Caller ID, but realistically, this only helps if the person who has your phone calls you on another device. Instead, asking the person to meet up and give your phone back would likely be simpler.

Here’s when you might be wondering: Right, but what’s the best way to track a cell phone by its phone number after all?

The Best Way to Track a Phone’s Location

Best Way To Track A Phone Number

While all the methods mentioned can work, usually you’ll need a third-party software to track someone else’s cell phone location. The good news is, these apps can do more than just provide the approximate location of the target phone.

Here’s a taste of what spy apps can do:

  • GPS tracking (Global Positioning System) & Location details
  • Access to Gallery
  • Access to SMS & text messages
  • Access to social media
  • Access to browser history
  • Access to installed apps

And much more!

If you’re looking for a solution to track the cell phone number of someone else, we would say you should go straight for a spying app.

On the other hand, if you’re the phone number’s owner, you may not need such a powerful GPS mobile number tracker as a spying app. Then, the list we brought will solve your problem of location sharing and cell phone number tracking.

Lastly, if just want to know phone number locations when they call you, a good Caller ID will provide you with cell phone number location, other contact details, location history, and many more relevant related data using advanced GPS technology.

Conclusion: Tracking a Cell Phone Number

There are many ways to trace cell phone numbers, each suiting different requirements and situations.

Although tracking your own phone number is usually straightforward, a spy app is the preferred option for tracking phones and phone numbers that don’t belong to you.

However, be alert to scams. Some services and apps falsely promise to locate your phone, access Google contacts on a target device, and more, with scant information.

Often, these claims are deceptive, leading you to download unnecessary apps or extensions. Therefore, exercise caution and thoroughly research before selecting apps for location tracking.


How do I monitor mobile devices?

The only way to comprehensively monitor mobile numbers is through third-party apps like spy apps.

They’re the best GPS location option for those needing to know every possible information stored on the target phone, including its movement history.

Can someone track my mobile number location?

In terms of possibility, yes.

However, it’s important to check the conditions and scenarios someone is tracking your phone number’s location, once there are cases that can be illegal according to the country or state you’re in.

Is It Free to Spy on Cell Phones?

The methods we’ve listed here are free, except for spying apps.

Although they usually have a free trial for you to monitor targeted device, there will be a subscription required later.

It’s possible to find some free apps with basic features like finding current location on Google Maps using GPS tracking technology.

Here you can check 6 Free Apps to Track Friends and Family on a Map (or share your location).

Is It possible to track a cell phone number on Google Maps?

Yes. If you’re on an Android phone, you can use Find My Device. Although Apple devices will use their own maps, rest assured they are as good and as accurate as Google Maps. Either way, you won’t have problems spotting and tracking your cell phone number.

Can someone be tracking my cell phone number right now?

Yes. As we’ve learned, tracking a cell phone number is not too hard if you have the right tools and knowledge.

After all, according to the situation, even Google Maps Find My Device or Apple’s Find My can get the job done, not to mention other more powerful apps we’ve discussed earlier.

If this is a concern, we recommend you learn How to Tell if Your Phone is Tapped.


Mobile technology writer.

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