National missing persons coordination centre

Someone I know is missing

You do not have to wait 24 hours to report someone as missing.


If you have serious concerns for the safety and welfare of a person, and their whereabouts is unknown, then you may immediately report them missing to local police by making a missing persons report.

When someone close to you is missing you may experience a range of emotions and be unsure about what happens next, what you should do to help find the person or where to turn for support. To answer some of these questions, we have developed a guide – SOS. Search options and Support. A guide for families and friends of missing people (PDF 326 KB).

Are there other options?

Police cannot search for persons in circumstances where there are no immediate concerns for their safety or welfare, such as searching for someone for the purposes of debt collection, or where people have dropped out of, or chosen to discontinue, contact. If you have lost contact with a family member over time and the person cannot be reported missing to police, you may wish to contact a family tracing agency. Search agencies are able to help people reconnect with relatives and reunite families, often in times of special need. If you are searching for family connections there are also some ways you can start searching yourself.

When someone is located

Police will respect the privacy of a missing person. If a missing adult is located safe and well, police cannot reveal their whereabouts without their permission. In some cases, police may only be permitted to provide information that the person has been located safe and well.

Go to ACT Policing

Australian Federal Police