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Application Programming Interface (API) Keys

An Application Programming Interface (API) Key is a secret code that you can use to identify yourself to ARIN when you interact with us. You create an API Key in ARIN Online, and then use the key in interactions with ARIN outside of ARIN Online. Multiple interactions may be performed with the same API Key, and you may deactivate/create API Keys at will.

Your API Key can be used for the following interactions with ARIN:

Creating and Managing API Keys

You create API Keys through your ARIN Online account under Your Account > Settings > Security Info. Choose Manage API Keys from the Actions menu. You can create multiple API Keys to locally track specific requests or to access reports, or you can use one API Key for all your requests. The API Key does not expire, but can be deactivated at any time.

You can also associate the API Key with an email address, though this is not recommended. While this prevents you from having to change your automated provisioning system, it is not as secure as stating the API Key in your submission.

Using API Keys

RESTful Calls

ARIN’s RESTful Provisioning system leverages modern application interfaces and provides even stronger authentication. RESTful calls require the use of an API Key. In order for your RESTful call to be considered, your ARIN Online account must be linked to a POC authoritative to make the request.

Email Templates

ARIN’s Version 5 Templates, released in 2011, use API Keys to authenticate your submissions. To use Version 5 Templates, include your API Key in the line indicated for it by the template.

Working with Version 4 Templates

ARIN understands that template changes can cause complications for customers with automated systems that were not designed for Version 5 Templates. To provide backward compatibility, ARIN provides two mechanisms by which you can send older Version 4 Templates to ARIN.

Option 1: Use an API Key with Version 4 Templates (recommended workaround)

  • To use Version 4 Templates in conjunction with your API Key, place your API Key anywhere in the subject line or From: header of your email template requests.
  • If you include an API Key, you can use any sender email address that is convenient for you.


Option 2: Associate email address to an API Key (you assume risk)

If you choose this approach, any Version 4 Templates sent to ARIN with the Associated Email “from:” address will be considered to have been sent by the holder of the associated API Key.

  • All email request templates sent from an email address that has been associated with a key are processed. The ease of spoofing the From: header by parties who are attempting to gain control of your resources makes this method less secure than using an API Key.
  • If you use this option, associate an email address that is different from your email address(es) displayed in ARIN's Whois, i.e., not in your organization’s ARIN Point of Contact (POC) records.
  • This option makes it unnecessary to include an API Key anywhere in the request template.

Caution: Using Option 2 is not as secure as explicitly including the API Key in your request submission, especially if the email address you specify is public information (for example, if it is found on POC data within the Whois services of ARIN, other RIRs, or domain registries/registrars).

Report Downloads

Reports are available to authorized users by choosing Downloads and Services in ARIN Online.  A RESTful HTTP request containing your API Key can be used to automate the retrieval of restricted access reports, such as Bulk Whois. This means you do not have to log in to your ARIN Online account to download the report. Details can be found in the instructions or ReadMe documentation for each report.

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