Python abstract API for PassiveTotal services in the form of libraries and command line utilities.





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RiskIQ PassiveTotal Python Library

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This Python library provides an interface to the RiskIQ PassiveTotal Internet intelligence database and the RiskIQ Illuminate Reputation Score.

Security researchers and network defenders use RiskIQ PassiveTotal to map threat actor infrastructure, profile hostnames & IP addresses, discover web technologies on Internet hosts.

Capabilites of this library include:

  • Credential management - protect API keys from accidental disclosure
  • Object analyzer - analyze hosts without knowing which API endpoints to use
  • CLI for quick queries and package configuration
  • Low-level wrappers for all PassiveTotal API endpoints

To learn more about RiskIQ and start a free trial, visit

Getting Started

Install the PassiveTotal Library

The PassiveTotal Python library is available in pip under the package name passivetotal. Consider setting up a virtual environment, then run:

pip install passivetotal

Obtain API Keys

Queries to the API must be authenticated with a PassiveTotal API key.

  1. Log in (or sign up) at
  2. Access your profile by clicking the person icon in the upper-right corner of the page.
  3. Click on "Account Settings"
  4. Under "API Access", click "Show" to reveal your API credentials.

The identifier for your API account is alternatively called a "username", a "user", or an "API key". Look for an email address and use that value when prompted for your "API username".

The "API Secret" is a long string of characters that should be kept secure. It is the primary authentication method for your API account.

Your PassiveTotal account may have a separate "API Secret" for your organization - when available, always use your organization key unless you have a specific reason not to.

Build a Config File

The optimal way to store your API credentials is inside a config file managed by this library's command line tools.

The library references the config file by default when creating new API connections, setting up the analyzer module, or running command line tools.

Run the command setup command with your username to get started:

pt-config setup

Enter the API secret key when prompted, then press enter. The complete configuration will then print out so you can confirm the values.

To see other configuration options, including options for an HTTP proxy, enter:

Choose an Interface

This library enables interaction with the PassiveTotal API through several distinct interfaces. Choose the one that best fits your use case.

If you're not sure where to start, use the Object Analyzer.

Object Analyzer

>>> from passivetotal import analyzer
>>> analyzer.init()
>>> age = analyzer.Hostname('').whois.age
>>> print('Domain is {} days old'.format(age))
Domain is 5548 days old
>>> analyzer.set_date_range(days_back=30)
>>> pdns = analyzer.Hostname('').ip.resolutions
>>> for record in pdns.sorted_by('lastseen'):
A "" [ 465 days] (2019-12-11 to 2021-03-21)
A "" [ 459 days] (2019-12-18 to 2021-03-22)


  • Ideal starting point for new scripts and product integrations.
  • Works well in interactive Python environments such as Jupyter.
  • Does not require familiarity with specific API endpoints.
  • Stores results within object instances to faciliate declarative interactions and offer an intuitive syntax.


  • May not have complete coverage for every API endpoint.
  • Opinionated: default values are optimized for efficient queries and common investigative pathways.
  • API queries run automatically when properties are first accessed, which may result in excessive API query usage.

Command Line

Access the CLI with the pt-client command. Run the command without options to see a list of available commands.

Most CLI commands only output JSON; if you need more robust output options, consider writing a script with the analyzer module.

Request Wrappers

Use these low-level interfaces when you know exactly which API endpoints you need to query and what parameters they require. These are still preferred over making API requests directly with requests or urllib because they benefit from the credential management and config file mechanism described above.

Wrappers should exist for every PassiveTotal API endpoint, but availability may lag behind when new features are implemented. If you cannot locate a wrapper for your preferred endpoint, use an instance of the passivetotal.GenericRequest class.

Additional Resources

Library docs:

RiskIQ Product Support:

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