ICANN has released a draft study into WHOIS misuse, and the results are not surprising
URL: http://www.icann.org/en/news/public-comment/whois-misuse-27nov13-en.htm - you can download a copy of the draft report there.
"In this study, we were concerned with the .BIZ, .INFO, and .ORG gTLD thick WHOIS Registries
and the .COM and .NET thin WHOIS Registries. Per the GNSO’s request for this study, we did
not attempt to study domain names registered under other smaller gTLDs or under ccTLDs."
"The main finding of the descriptive study is that there is a statistically significant occurrence of
WHOIS misuse affecting Registrants’ email addresses, postal addresses, and phone numbers,
published in WHOIS when registering domains in these gTLDs. Overall, we find that 44% of
Registrants experience one or more of these types of WHOIS misuse."
"Similarly, we find that the domain price is negatively correlated with the possibility of misuse of
email addresses published in WHOIS (i.e., experimental domains purchased at greater cost had
less email address misuse). We also discover that .COM, .NET, and .ORG domains are
associated with less email address misuse, while .BIZ domains are associated with more