Ensure duplicate usernames are visually disambiguated

Right now, two different identities with the same username appear the same. This poses both a UX and security issue. This situation should be resolved by visually marking the two users, though it's not completely clear how to do so.

Ideas include:

  • color them differently
  • expose part of their identity ID like a fingerprint/pin (think Discord's @name#1234 system)
  • add symbols to the beginning/end of their names
Assigned to
1 year, 3 months ago
9 months ago
feature release-blocker security wisteria

~whereswaldon closed duplicate ticket #30 1 year, 3 months ago

~amolith 9 months ago

To throw this out there, you could also differentiate between duplicate usernames in the bottom bar where metadata goes. For each user, maybe display a shortened version of their signature ID or Name#8137 as you suggested above. Personally, I like that in combination with colouring their names differently inline. It would be a subtle visual hint right where you're looking but also displayed in a more obvious manner below. It can sometimes be hard to differentiate between two colours so an additional method would be beneficial to include.

~whereswaldon 9 months ago

~amolith Good thought. I worry about that bottom bar being too cramped on narrower terminals though. It can be pretty tight right now with just the reply node's ID. Maybe a keybinding to inspect the ID of the currently selected node's sender?

Regardless, I think that:

  • All usernames can be colorized to provide subtle warning of one user trying to pose as another.
  • We can display a short component of the node ID of a user after their username all the time. It would look something like whereswaldon#RyQy. This example is only using the first 4 base64url-encoded characters of my identity's node ID (so it doesn't actually capture which hash it is or the digest length), but I'm uncertain how important that is for this purpose...
  • We can detect duplicate usernames and be more aggressive about visualizing the differences between them. This will not detect subtle things like switching the character set of a single letter or including weird unicode whitespace, but it should help with the most blatant attempts to impersonate another user.
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