Address verification can save you a lot of time and headaches. You can verify addresses and phone numbers of customers, credit card users and even prospective employees through an address search (often called “reverse address lookup” or “reverse address search” if you start your search with the address). Some address search can be done for free, some address lookup requires the assistance of your credit-card merchant bank and some can be done with computer software or via reverse address lookup paid services. Among the uses of address search: Combat fraud by a reverse address lookup of potential clients. Protect against a bad hire by reverse address search using the address of a job applicant Ensure correct mailing lists to promote your business by regular address search. Improve collections by eliminating returned mail through address lookup. Go for free address search first There are free Internet sites that verify addresses and/or phone numbers. Use your merchant account for address lookup Most credit-card companies offer merchants online Address Verification Systems (AVS). AVS can run an address search on cardholders’ billing addresses at no cost to the merchant. It can save merchants the cost of purchasing software, help combat fraud, and check customer billing addresses for shipping. Buy verification software for reverse address lookup Reverse address search software can do more than check addresses. It also can perform postal presorting and detect duplicate addresses and/or names, which can save money by cutting down on wasted mailings and postage. Save time and money by doing an address search the first time. Use the appropriate means of address verification for their specified purpose. For example, if it is for direct mail or billing efforts, try one of the software programs. If it is for a credit card, check with your merchant bank or the specific credit-card site.