Registration Data Access Protocol
On 17 May 2018 the ICANN Board adopted a Temporary Specification for gTLD Registration Data. This page is under review and will be updated to address the Temporary Specification.
The Registration Data Access Protocol (RDAP) enables users to access current registration data and was created as an eventual replacement for the WHOIS protocol. RDAP was developed by the technical community in the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF).
RDAP Pilot Program
An RDAP pilot program, which will conclude on 31 July 2018, is now underway. This voluntary program was initiated at the request [PDF, 93 KB] of the ICANN gTLD Registries Stakeholder Group, with the support of the Registrar Stakeholder Group.
The primary goal of the pilot program is to develop a baseline profile (or profiles) to guide implementation, establish an implementation target date, and develop a plan for the implementation of an RDAP-based solution. To participate in the RDAP pilot program, follow the instructions in the community wiki workspace.
Some of RDAP's advantages over WHOIS protocol include:
- Standardized query, response and error messages.
- Secure access to data (i.e., over HTTPS).
- Extensibility (e.g., makes it easy to add output elements).
- A bootstrapping mechanism that makes it easy to find the authoritative server for a given query.
- Redirection/reference mechanism (e.g., from a thin registry to a registrar).
- Builds on top of the well-known web protocol HTTP.
- Internationalization support for registration data.
- Provides the option to enable differentiated access (e.g., limited access for anonymous users and full access for authenticated users).
- On 1 August, the gTLD Registries Stakeholder Group with support from the Registrar Stakeholder Group submits a proposal to the ICANN organization to implement RDAP with a first phase in the form of an RDAP pilot.
- On 1 September, the ICANN organization accepts [PDF, 538 KB] the proposal to implement RDAP and starts the first phase: an RDAP pilot.
- On 26 July, ICANN publishes a gTLD RDAP profile. However, the gTLD Registries Stakeholder Group requests ICANN to not use that profile and instead work together on a modified plan to implement RDAP.
- In March, the Web Extensible Internet Registration Data Service (WEIRDS) working group finalizes RFCs defining the Registration Data Access Protocol.
- In September, ICANN begins consulting the Internet community on a draft version of the RDAP gTLD Profile. These discussions take place over the next 10 months, including a formal public comment period.
- On 4 June, ICANN issues a roadmap to implement SAC 051.
- The WEIRDS working group within the IETF begins developing the Registration Data Access Protocol.
- 2011 –
- The ICANN community holds discussions about the need for technical evolution of the WHOIS service.
- The IETF issued a protocol for a directory service for ARPANET users. This protocol has been in use ever since; it is referred to as WHOIS.