I like to base characters I write on actual people, but usually we only get to see a tiny part of a person's life. Well, here are some tools to get more details.
Want to know the demographics of a neighborhood or city you're writing about? Go here and click on You Are Where You Live. After you enter a zip code, it will give you a list of the demographic groups that live there.
Want access to all the information on the web about a single person? A good start is pretrieve. This is a meta search engine that gives you access to everything from available criminal records to property values.
Zoominfo pulls up all the business articles for any name you enter. You can narrow the search for a specific industry, but typing in random names will give you great character details for fiction.
Of course the first thing you'll do is type in your own name and marvel at the amount of information there is about you. But, after that, think about these as ways to build real characters. Typing a made up name into a few search engines can build a very complex and real person.