WHOIS .CN: A Gateway to China’s Digital Domain

We continue populating our list of ccTLDs and gTLDs. As you know, our Domain Availability API and Whois API allow programmatically domain availability and Whois checks. It’s time to find out whois .CN!

The .cn domain stands as the country code Top-Level Domain (ccTLD) for China, the world’s most populous nation and a global powerhouse in technology, commerce, and culture. As China’s official digital identifier, the .cn domain plays a crucial role in the online presence of businesses, organizations, and individuals within the country and those looking to establish a connection with the Chinese market. This article delves into the intricacies of the .CN WHOIS system, providing insights into its structure, purpose, and the vast digital landscape it oversees.

The Significance of .CN in the Global Digital Ecosystem

In the growing TLD arena, the .cn domain has emerged as one of the most sought-after ccTLDs. This reflects China’s significant impact on the global stage. It offers a trusted and recognizable platform for entities aiming to engage with the Chinese market, enhancing their visibility and credibility within one of the world’s largest internet user bases.

The management and governance of the .cn domain underscore China’s commitment to fullfiling a secure, stable, and efficient digital environment. As we can see by the following grow, .CN is the largest ccTLD.


Understanding WHOIS in the Context of .CN

WHOIS services provide public access to data on domain registrations, including registrant contact information, domain status, and registration dates. For .cn domains, the China Internet Network Information Center (CNNIC) administers the WHOIS system, ensuring transparency and accountability in domain registration processes. The .CN WHOIS system serves as a critical tool for domain research, cybersecurity, and intellectual property protection, offering valuable insights into the ownership and administration of .cn domains.

The Evolution and Management of .CN

Since its inception in November 1990, the .cn domain has witnessed exponential growth, mirroring China’s rapid digital transformation and its ascent as a global internet leader. CNNIC, as the regulatory authority, has steered the .cn domain through this evolution, implementing policies that cater to the needs of China’s diverse internet population while aligning with international best practices. The organization’s efforts have been instrumental in optimizing the .cn domain space for reliability, security, and accessibility.

Don’t forget, .CN is not the only TLD in China, as there are IDN’s as well. Chinese Internationalized Domain Names (IDNs) are domain names that are represented using Chinese characters. These domain names allow speakers of Chinese languages to access and interact with websites using native script domain names, rather than being restricted to the Latin alphabet. Chinese IDNs are an essential part of making the internet more accessible and user-friendly for Chinese-speaking populations.

Chinese domains, .CN ccTLD and whois .CN
Chinese domains, .CN ccTLD and whois .CN

Given the complexity and variety of the Chinese script, which includes thousands of characters, Chinese IDNs represent a significant technical achievement. They enable the registration of domain names in both Simplified Chinese and Traditional Chinese scripts, catering to the linguistic preferences across different regions where Chinese is spoken, such as Mainland China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Singapore.

The process for registering and using Chinese IDNs follows the general principles of IDNs worldwide. They are encoded in ASCII format using Punycode for compatibility with the Domain Name System (DNS). For example, the Chinese IDN equivalent for “example” might be registered in Chinese characters (e.g., “例子.中国” for Mainland China or “例子.台湾” for Taiwan) and then encoded in Punycode for DNS purposes.

The introduction of Chinese IDNs has facilitated greater internet inclusivity and digital engagement among Chinese speakers, providing a bridge between the linguistic diversity of the Chinese-speaking world and the technical infrastructure of the internet.

Navigating China’s Digital Landscape Through .CN WHOIS

The .CN WHOIS database offers a window into China’s dynamic digital domain, enabling users to verify domain registration details, assess domain availability, and identify potential trademark infringements. However, in compliance with privacy laws and regulations, certain personal information may be redacted, balancing the need for privacy protection with the demands of transparency.

Challenges and Considerations in .CN WHOIS Access

Accessing WHOIS information for .cn domains involves navigating regulatory frameworks that reflect China’s approach to internet governance. Users must be mindful of legal and ethical considerations, adhering to rules on data usage and respecting privacy norms. Despite these challenges, the .CN WHOIS service remains a vital resource for stakeholders in the digital domain.

The Role of .CN in China’s Internet Strategy

The .cn domain is more than just a digital identifier; it is a strategic asset in China’s internet policy, facilitating the country’s digital economy, cultural exchange, and international communication. It exemplifies China’s vision for its digital future, emphasizing innovation, openness, and connectivity within a framework of national sovereignty and security.

Whois .CN Example

The .cn domain and its WHOIS system encapsulate the essence of China’s internet landscape, offering a critical infrastructure for digital identity, security, and commerce. As China continues to expand its digital frontiers, the .cn domain will undoubtedly play a key role in shaping the country’s engagement with the global digital community, reinforcing its position as a leading internet power.

This overview provides a foundational understanding of the .CN WHOIS and its significance within China’s digital domain. If you need more detailed exploration on specific aspects like regulatory challenges, the impact on international businesses, or technical specifics of the WHOIS protocol in China, please let me know!

Whois CN example

This WHOIS JSON record provides information about the domain “china.cn,” while also highlighting the impact of privacy regulations like GDPR on the availability of personal data. Here’s a summary of the key components in the record:

  1. General Information:
    • WHOIS Server: The query was processed by “whois.cnnic.cn,” indicating that CNNIC (China Internet Network Information Center) managed the request.
    • Status: “Successfully processed” with a status code of “0” shows the query was completed without any errors.
    • Registered: The domain is currently registered, as confirmed by “true.”
  2. Domain Registration Details:
    • Date Created: The domain was initially registered on March 10, 2003, showing a longstanding presence online.
    • Date Expires: The registration is set to expire on May 8, 2028, indicating a long-term commitment to the domain.
    • Domain Status: Listed as “ok,” suggesting the domain is in good standing without any issues affecting its status.
  3. Nameservers:
    • Lists nameservers such as “cl1.sfndns.cn,” “cl2.sfndns.cn,” “cl1.sfndns.com,” “cl2.sfndns.com,” “ns1.china.org.cn,” and “ns1.china-online.com.cn,” indicating a robust DNS setup possibly for load balancing and redundancy.
  4. Privacy and GDPR Compliance:
    • WHOIS Raw: Mention of “Disabled due to GDPR” shows compliance with privacy regulations that limit public disclosure of personal information.
    • Contacts: Specific details for registrar, registrant, admin, and tech contacts are either not provided or marked as “Disabled due to GDPR,” reflecting privacy measures.
  5. Registrar Information:
    • The registrar is named as “北京国科云计算技术有限公司(原北京中科三方网络技术有限公司),” a Chinese organization, indicating local registration and management.
  6. Miscellaneous:
    • “_cached”: false indicates that the information is freshly retrieved with a Live Whois API.
    • “Requests available”: 68 indicates the number of remaining WHOIS queries available before reaching a limit imposed by the querying service or registry.

This WHOIS record for “china.cn” showcases the domain’s registration status and adherence to privacy regulations under GDPR, balancing transparency in domain registration with the protection of personal information.


Goran Duskic has been the Founder and CEO of WhoAPI Inc. since 2011, a company that specializes in developing APIs, including the well-known Whois API. He started his career in internet entrepreneurship in 2006 and has co-founded several online businesses, including a web hosting company that he later sold. Goran's work primarily involves creating practical API solutions to meet technological needs.