What is WHOIS?
WHOIS is a somewhat obsolete, publicly-searchable database of domain registration information. If you're curious about who owns a domain, WHOIS can (in theory) provide that information. ICANN provides a WHOIS lookup service which you can access here. Porkbun understands that most folks don't want their contact information to be made public, so we employ a free WHOIS Privacy service called Private By Design. WHOIS Privacy hides your actual contact information from the public. It is then enabled by default for all Porkbun-managed domains that support it and can be toggled by clicking the icon in the WHOIS column in Domain Management.
A typical WHOIS record contains:
- The name, street address, email, and phone number contacts for:
- The domain's registrant (owner)
- The domain's administrator
- The technician responsible for the domain's operation
- The domain's current registrar
- The domain's registration and expiration dates
- The domain's status (status of "ok" indicates the domain is ready for transfer, "hold" means the domain is suspended, "transferProhibited" means it's locked and cannot be transferred. For more information on domain statuses, check out this guide provided by ICANN.)
- The domain's current authoritative nameservers
Some TLDs do not support WHOIS privacy due to registry level restrictions. Those TLDs include but are not limited to: .bh, .de, .us, .am, .nyc, .law, .abogado, .srl, .boats, .uk, .co.uk, org.uk, me.uk, .eu, in, .co.in, .net.in, .org.in, .firm.in, .gen.in, .ind.in
In the case of a domain with WHOIS Privacy turned on, your private information is hidden and replaced with the following contact information:
Organization: Private by Design, LLC
Mailing Address: 500 Westover Dr #9816, Sanford NC 27330 US
Email: (instead of your actual email address, a privacy link is provided that will take users to a secure contact form. Once the form is filled out, the message is sent by us to your email.)
You can find more information about all our WHOIS privacy settings in this guide.