One of the many ways that fraudsters and debtors avoid being found is by using a PO box to disguise their physical location. To add to the trouble, information on the owner of a PO box is not readily available to the public. However, depending on your legal situation, there may be methods to obtain ownership information of a PO box.

PO box information is considered private information and is protected by privacy laws. That means that if you want to find out who owns a PO box, you can’t just go down to the post office and ask for the information. However, you can send an official request to the postmaster.

To request information on a PO box from the USPS postmaster, contact your local USPS location or visit their website to complete an official Request for Boxholder Information. To use this form, you must have some sort of legal and legitimate reasoning to be requesting the information. The postmaster will not give out information if they believe or prove that the applicant has ill intentions. When completing this form, it’s important to note that you can set up a PO box using a pseudonym (a fake name) and receive mail using that name. The most important part of your request is to make sure the box number is correct.

If you are unable to obtain the boxholder information from the postmaster, the next best method is to search using online search engines. Using the physical location of the PO box, run search queries with your subject’s name and the city/state of the PO box. Search their social media accounts and the accounts that communicate with your subject to further narrow down their possible location. If your subject owns a business, search the state’s Secretary of State database to see if the PO box is connected to the principal addresses of any of the company officers.

Another option to locate the physical location of a PO box owner is tracking devices and direct mail. Before considering any of these methods to obtain information, make sure that you are following all applicable federal and state privacy laws, as well as any other applicable privacy laws such as the Gramm Leach Bliley Act and the Fair Credit Reporting Act, which prohibit providing false or misleading information to a subject or institution to obtain private information about a subject. Before using these methods, make sure to get good legal advice from a qualified attorney, this article is not designed to be legal advice.

If you want to find out the owner of a PO box, your best bet is to contact USPS directly. The agency will be able to provide you with such information if a request is made in writing.