Whois privacy seems to be a bit misunderstood by the general public and even some people in the technology sector. I regularly see news articles, social media posts, and other references that mention a Whois privacy / Whois proxy service without a clear understanding about the company or the purpose it serves.
There are many good reasons to use a Whois privacy or Whois proxy service. Of course some people who do bad things also use services to keep their Whois information private, but just because some bad actors use them, it doesn’t mean there is not a valid purpose for them.
Most domain registrars offer some form of Whois privacy or Whois proxy service. In fact, many of the companies that offer privacy / proxy services are related to the domain registrar. Whois privacy services are probably a nice upsell revenue stream for domain registrars.
Because of the confusion about these services, I thought I would share a list of popular Whois privacy / proxy services and the registrar that offers the services (if applicable). Some of these services may be offered at multiple domain registrars, and some may be independent services chosen individually by domain registrants.
- Domains by Proxy, LLC – GoDaddy
- Perfect Privacy, LLC – Network Solutions and Register.com (Web.com)
- Whois Privacy Protection Service, Inc. – Enom and Name.com
- Moniker Privacy Services, LLC – Moniker
- WhoisGuard, Inc. – NameCheap
- WhoisProxy.com Ltd.
- Domain Privacy Service
- Contact Privacy Inc.
- Privacy.Link – Uniregistry
- IDPS International Domain Privacy Services GmbH
- Obfuscated whois Gandi-63-65 boulevard Massena – Gandi
If I missed any larger Whois privacy / proxy service, or if I listed something incorrectly, please let me know!
one important thing about whois privacy services is that they must be a “legal” privacy service, obeying to ICANN rules regarding this matter.
some guys think they are smart and register a domain name with WHOIS on its name, place some bogus information on its WHOIS and then start using this domain name as his whois service for other domains.
a clever way for not paying for a true whois service.
WHOIS spam is becoming worse and worse every day for domains owners nowadays. I can’t count the number of times I receive calls at all times of the day and night from India to sell “affordable web services”. Who falls for that?
That’s not WHOIS was intended to but as ICANN seems not to worry at all, we have no other option than either lie on our WHOIS data an put fake information or subscribe to those Whois Privacy Providers – which none are free.
Sometimes I wonder if those spammers are not sponsored by the Privacy providers?
“none are free” — not true, privacy services are FREE at Uniregistry and DomainMonster. I’m sure other registrars provide free privacy as well.