How Do Debt Collectors Find You?

How Do Debt Collectors Find You?

It’s hard to hide from a debt collector. Some people think you can “lay low” and wait out the collection attempts, but in our digital age it is easy for anyone (including collection agencies) to find out the information they need to get in touch with you. With nothing more than a name, collectors can use public records and other resources to find information such as phone numbers, current and past addresses, and family contacts. Listed below are a few of the ways they can track down this information.

The Creditor

Our company is not a debt buyer; we are hired to collect debt that you may have incurred with the original creditor. With that being said, the majority of the information we may have on file for you stems from the information you may have provided to the original creditor when signing up for their services.

Soft credit inquiry

Soft credit inquiries are all credit inquiries where your credit is NOT being reviewed by a prospective lender. These types of inquiries DO NOT negatively impact your credit score.

Data Brokers

Whenever you sign up for something, fill out a survey, or enter personal information online, there is a possibility that this information is being collected by a data aggregator. These agencies gather purchase history and demographic information from consumers in order to sell it to the interested parties.

Government Agencies

Occasionally some collection agencies may be able to gain access to information you have provided to government organizations; this can be performed in order to collect and verify your current contact information.

Public Records

Information contained within public records are pieces of information deemed non-confidential and are required by law to be made and kept. These records are open and accessible to the general public. These records at times may contain some information you may consider private. Some examples of public records are as follows: births, marriages, deaths, court dockets, ownership records and criminal records.

Skip Tracers

Skip tracing is a job that involves locating individuals whom have defaulted on a debt or are missing. In the realm of debt collection, it generally refers to the process of locating a debtor whose information is no longer accurate. Methods vary from company to company in relevance to their skip tracing policies and procedures for locating consumers.

Additional Resources

Learn more from our other FAQ articles:

More Debt Collection FAQs

Learn more from ACA International

ACA International is the largest membership organization in the accounts receivable management industry.


Convergent Outsourcing is a third party collection agency focused on simplifying the collections process for our creditors and consumers. We are happy to work with you to find a way that you can pay your debt, and have Client Service Representatives available to chat with you from 7 a.m.-5 p.m. PST on Monday through Friday. Please call us at 1-800-444-8485 or you can submit a question or concern any time through our online contact form.

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About Us

In business since 1950, Convergent is one of America’s leading collections agencies. As an accredited agency, all of our representatives are thoroughly trained on customer service and Fair Debt Collection Practices Act compliance. We believe in customer service and want to make it easy as possible for people to pay the debts they owe.

Our Contacts

800 SW 39th Street, Suite 100
Renton, WA 98057

800-444-8485
7 am to 5 pm Pacific Time
Monday to Friday

New York City Residents: Please be advised that language access services, including the translation of information into a language other than English, may be available. A translation and description of commonly-used debt collection terms is available in multiple languages on the New York City Department of Consumer and Worker Protection’s website, www.nyc.gov/dca

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