Intelius Review: Is This Background Check Service Legit?

To sustain this free service, we receive affiliate commissions via some of our links. This doesn’t affect rankings. Our review process.

Intelius phone app on Samsung phoneWondering who’s calling you from unknown numbers? Has someone new entered your life in an important role, but you’d like to know more about them before you let them too close to you and your family? Using the power of the internet, Intelius makes it possible to access a treasure trove of information online. Here is our review of this leading site in the online background check space including features, pricing, pros, cons, and more.

Article Overview

Intelius logo

What Is Intelius?

Intelius, USSearch, and their sister website Classmates, are all part of the larger Seattle-based company called People Connect, Inc. Their website indicates that the “companies were brought together to revolutionize an industry that’s filled with dark corners and reactive strategy.

The company claims that by combining the resources of all three sites, they can:

Shine a light into those dark corners and be the digital identity company that empowers consumers.

Leveraging Classmates gives the company a large volume of Personally Identifiable Information (PII) which it can then use to fill its database on Intelius and vice versa. Regardless of the reasons for their success, it’s all working, because they have quickly become a leader in the people search and background check space.

How Do Intelius Searches Work?

Upon visiting the site, you have the option to run a people search or reverse phone number or address lookup. After inputting the information, you’re taken to a page which shows some details about the person being queried. From there, any further information requires paying for one of the reports.


4.2 / 5
Customer Service & Support 3.5
Pricing 4.6
Data/Intelligence 4.3
User-Friendly 4.4


  • Among the most affordable
  • Easy to navigate
  • Some employment data
  • Mobile apps for Android and iOS
  • Unlimited full background checks with subscription


  • No pricing available without considerable wait time and giving up your email
  • Pricing and trial options can be confusing
  • Sneaky pricing practices for “one-time report option”

Best Background Check Services

Alternatives To Intelius

Not impressed with this score? Our background check experts have reviewed nine of the biggest providers. Check out our best background check services showdown to discover our top picks this year.

6 Key Features

  1. Wide variety of search options
  2. Use to look up unknown people in your life
  3. Employment data available
  4. Mobile apps (Android and iOS) give you unlimited access to billions of public records on the go (and can screen incoming phone calls)
  5. Report accessible for 45 days
  6. BBB: A+ rating and accredited


Be careful when you’re getting ready to order. They say they give you the option of a one-time report for $29, but if you look carefully, the pricing is actually per month. So you can end up signing up for a recurring subscription that you didn’t intend to.

  • $24.86/month for unlimited searches
  • $42.25 for 2-month subscription
  • Reverse phone lookup 5-day trial: $0.95 ($34.95 charged after trial every 30 days)

Consumer Feedback


My personal experience with Intelius is completely at variance with all these poor ratings. Intelius is an information search company, and they’re the best, period. Perhaps equally important, they have integrity. There was a small automated-payment misunderstanding, and they returned my money with no hassle. I think this kind of honesty is esp. Important in an area like this. Nobody can work miracles, but if the information is there, these people will have it. Five stars, definitely! – Bill H., Sitejabber 9/6/2017

I used Intelius to find someone I was looking for! I tried one other service but they didn’t have current information on that person. Intelius helped me find the person I was looking for so 5 stars. – Paul, Trustpilot 4/8/2016


I signed up for 1 reverse phone look up for a fee of $0.99. Now I’ve been charged on my credit card 2 reoccurring monthly fees of $32.05 each. I did not sign up for a subscription. When I called to resolve this they would not credit the 2 charges. I threatened submitting a complaint online so they agreed to credit 1 of the $32.05 charges. This is an admission of they should never have charged these fees to begin with. Not happy that they will not refund all fees that I did not authorize. – Susie W., BBB 7/8/2020

The information in the background was not what I expected. It was useless and basic information I could have found via Google. In addition, after I purchased the ONE TIME report, Intelius scammed me and began charging my PayPal account for a monthly service which I intentionally did NOT sign up for. But somehow in their purchasing process they manage to slam your account with a membership and then start charging you. In addition to losing $29.95, it cost me time and headache of having to reset my PayPal account since I had to stop any future payment attempts by Intellius. This company is a scam!!!! – Barrett P., Trustpilot 5/15/2020

Our Personal Experience With Intelius

The results themselves were very accurate for what we expected from a consumer grade background check company. However, the pricing model with constant offers to “add this and add that” made it feel like a bit of trickery. It wasn’t fine print, but a more upfront tiered pricing solution would give customers the data they want without feeling like the dealership that just sold them a car with no floor mats.

Intelius Mobile App

Watch this quick video to see how their mobile app works for getting background info on the go.

More Background On Background Checks

Intelius provides very accurate information for an online search company. At the end of the day, companies such as Intelius give the consumer the power of information like never before, and while it may not be as accurate or as thorough as a private investigator, the convenience and ease make it an attractive option (just make sure you know what you’re paying for and don’t get caught in their sales trap). Learn more about how background checks work and read reviews from other companies in our background check comparison article.

About The Author:

Greg is a North America Security Manager for a large agriculture company where, among other responsibilities, he leads and manages their Global Threat Intelligence Program. In that role he leverages various 3rd Party tools and open source intelligence techniques for protection of their assets, people, products and information. He also serves as the lead for information security for the region, driving awareness and training campaigns and also managing the Data Leakage Program (DLP). Additionally, he owns and operates Sentinel Consulting Group, a security consulting, private investigations and executive protection company serving clients throughout North Carolina.

Disclaimer: This website contains reviews, opinions and information regarding products and services manufactured or provided by third parties. We are not responsible in any way for such products and services, and nothing contained here should be construed as a guarantee of the functionality, utility, safety or reliability of any product or services reviewed or discussed. Please follow the directions provided by the manufacturer or service provider when using any product or service reviewed or discussed on this website.

Notify of
1 Comment
Oldest Most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

I’ve been using Intelius services eve since 2002 and really enjoyed my entire experience with them. I used it basically to keep myself safe from untrustworthy people who I later learned, through Intelius, truly were shady characters with criminal backgrounds. I decided to download their app and make use of it in 2019. However, as of May, 2020, I have discovered that the Intelius app is no longer effective. I have uninstalled it and reinstalled it and after multiple attempts to contact Intelius with no response back to me, I have just canceled my subscription. Hope this helps.