Beta Launch of the New ICANN WHOIS Lookup Tool

Five months ago, ICANN launched the new WHOIS website (, a one-stop shop for questions and information about everything WHOIS, the Internet’s record system of domain registration data. This new portal was just the first part of ICANN’s goal of implementing substantial improvements to the current system, based on the recommendations outlined in the Action Plan [PDF, 119 KB], a series of recommendations from the WHOIS Policy Review Team on how to move forward with improving WHOIS.

ICANN is excited to announce that the new ICANN WHOIS Lookup tool, a key deliverable under the Action Plan, is now available on the WHOIS website in Beta format.  It features a centralized search tool where users can find WHOIS data about any top-level and second-level domains registered on any gTLD under contract with ICANN; even those that have been newly delegated into the root of the DNS.

The new ICANN whois tool looks pretty good:


This new system, which was created as a direct result of the community’s input, is designed to be a user-friendly, educational tool, above all else. Among its features are automatic translation of the data types into the user’s preferred language and a user-friendly, guided experience in performing WHOIS lookup to research domains. The information displayed to users through the search tool is not stored by ICANN, but retrieved by accessing the WHOIS services of registrars and registries through Port 43 in response to a user’s query.


ICANN is committed to continuing to improve the WHOIS Lookup tool and the WHOIS website in general. Your feedback is a critical part of the new lookup tool’s success, so please try it out and send ICANN your feedback at This is the first time ICANN has provided a comprehensive lookup tool to query WHOIS results, so any and all comments are encouraged.

The new WHOIS website and Lookup tool is just part of how ICANN is implementing the recommendations of the WHOIS Review Team. To find out more about the WHOIS Lookup tool or where other improvements stand, download the Draft Implementation Plan or the latest Implementation Status Chart.


About Konstantinos Zournas

I studied Computer Engineering and Computer Science in London, UK and I am now living in Athens, Greece. I went online in 1995, started coding in 1996 and began buying domain names and creating websites in 2000. I started the blog in 2012.


  1. are they still going through with the extreme changes to whois they proposed last year? where people had to have credentials to access it? i think thats a horrible idea personally.

      • thats good. i was worried about not being able to research domains easily and email inquires from buyers being no more.

      • doing some quick searching it sounds like they still plan on going through with it but its been delayed due to criticism. i couldn’t remember the name before but its ARDS. as much as i hate whois spammers this will put domainers at a huge disadvantage both for researching domains and the general public who may wish to purchase domains from domain owners.

  2. This is a huge improvement and fills a void in the industry. It makes sense that the regulator or “state record authority” would provide title records for individual parcels in the region. About time ICANN did something like this. I feel a lot better paying ICANN fees as part of my name purchase when I see public benefit initiatives like this keeping commercial providers like on their toes.

  3. This is still just a whois gateway. In terms of whois history, Reverse IP and thick whois for ccTLD’s etc.. you are better off using IPNeighborhood.

  4. Tried it today got, ” Sorry, but the Registry or Registrar WHOIS Server responded with a rate limit message due to high query volumes or has closed the connection without a response. Please try your request again later. ” Happened several times over an hour, never did get any whois records.

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