What is WPP aka Whois Privacy Protection?

Question

What is Whois Privacy Protection and why one might need it?

Answer

Privacy Protection is a service that hides the domain owner details from public WHOIS and replaces it with information of a forwarding service.

When one registers a domain name, one's contact details are included in the publicly available WHOS database. Sometimes it's undesirable to have this data available publicly for the reasons of spam protection or domain hijacking.

The level of data disclosure depends on the registry. Some enable privacy by default (.de, .eu) whereas others (.us, .in) forbid it altogether.

For instance, in the case of a typical private VeriSign domain with WPP enabled, Openprovider, among other fields hidden by default, will substitute the registrant's organisation name, their state/province and the country:

Without WPP:

Domain Name: example.net
Registrant Name: REDACTED FOR PRIVACY
Registrant Organization:
Registrant Street: REDACTED FOR PRIVACY
Registrant City: REDACTED FOR PRIVACY
Registrant State/Province: Pennsylvania
Registrant Postal Code: REDACTED FOR PRIVACY
Registrant Country: US
Registrant Phone: REDACTED FOR PRIVACY
Registrant Phone Ext: REDACTED FOR PRIVACY
Registrant Fax: REDACTED FOR PRIVACY
Registrant Fax Ext: REDACTED FOR PRIVACY
Registrant Email: https://contact-form.registrar.eu/?domainName=op-zone-exists.net&purpose=owner

With WPP enabled:

Domain Name: example.net
Registrant Name: REDACTED FOR PRIVACY
Registrant Organization: Whois Privacy Protection Foundation
Registrant Street: REDACTED FOR PRIVACY
Registrant City: REDACTED FOR PRIVACY
Registrant State/Province: Zuid-Holland
Registrant Postal Code: REDACTED FOR PRIVACY
Registrant Country: NL
Registrant Phone: REDACTED FOR PRIVACY
Registrant Phone Ext: REDACTED FOR PRIVACY
Registrant Fax: REDACTED FOR PRIVACY
Registrant Fax Ext: REDACTED FOR PRIVACY
Registrant Email: https://contact-form.registrar.eu/?domainName=op-zone-exists.net&purpose=owner

See TLD reference sheet for a list of TLDs supporting the service (column AJ)

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