COLUMBUS, Ohio (WSPD) -- Ohioans can now check to see if phone numbers, e-mail addresses or screen names belong to registered sex offenders. It's a new feature of the state's sex offender online database.

"Ohio is one of eight states with this search capability and we encourage people to use it," said Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine.

The database has always allowed people to search for sex offenders near an address or by name.

If the phone number, e-mail address, or screen name come up with a match the user is directed to call their local county sheriff's office or the Bureau of Criminal Investigation and Identification.

Sex offenders are required to register their home and work addresses, phone numbers, e-mail addresses and screen names with their local county sheriffs' offices.

"You can find this new reverse-lookup tool on the Ohio Attorney General's web page or any local sheriff's site in Ohio.

DeWine thinks it will be especially helpful for parents who find unknown phone numbers on their child's cell phone or e-mail in box.