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Ability to advanced search on ALL one's own past usernames

(36 Posts)

MNHQ have commented on this thread.

BarrackerBarmer Tue 13-Feb-18 14:00:01

I wondered if it might be possible for a user to search on ALL their own usernames. When checking past posting history it's tricky for frequent namechangers to remember which name was used when, and prolific posters can find it quite a challenge.

Is there a possible techy solution to this MNHQ?

Flamingowings Tue 13-Feb-18 14:03:42

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

LornaMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 13-Feb-18 16:16:35

Hi folks,

Thanks for the suggestions - always happy to pass them on and will do this now.

Would anyone else be interested in this? If so, make some noise on this thread!


BarrackerBarmer Thu 19-Apr-18 11:14:59

I'm bumping this because in light if very recent privacy concerns I think posters may wish to be able to more easily search through their posting history and work out if the jigsaw piecing of their posts under different usernames places them at risk.

If anyone else would like this functionality, please add to the thread.

Bumblefuddle Thu 19-Apr-18 11:16:10

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Saltcrust Thu 19-Apr-18 11:22:14

Not sure I like this idea. I am an ignorant technophobe but wouldn't an ability to link info posted under different nick names make users more vulnerable (if info got in to wrong hands or there was a malfunction) than less?

Bumblefuddle Thu 19-Apr-18 11:23:52

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

liondance Thu 19-Apr-18 11:24:32

Can you not just look at your username history on your account page and search for each one?

BarrackerBarmer Thu 19-Apr-18 11:39:07

Some users have been here 10 or more years and changed names multiple times, liondance. Principally because we were trying to protect our online identity from being pieced together by using different names.

a poster who wishes to find a specific post from 10 years ago because she is concerned about identifying information in it would have to remember which username she was using and when, or search one by one through multiple names.

It may prove better for MNHQ to help users to quickly find their own posts so that they can delete individual posts, rather than risk posters just demanding a wholscale deletion of their entire posting history because it's too hard to find the worrisome posts in their history.

MN will end up like Swiss Cheese if thousands of posts have to go in one deletion.

Beyond11cisRetinol Thu 19-Apr-18 11:39:42

Seconding this idea. Maybe if it's a serious hacking concern, it could require duel thingy login? Or is that a right pita to set up?

okMaybeIAmATERF Thu 19-Apr-18 11:40:24

What I'd like is not online search, but the ability to download a zip file of all the information Mumsnet has on me, which would include all the posts I've made under any name. Facebook and Google offer such facilities; it's probably easier than online search (which would need to have a user interface designed for it); it lets users use their preferred tools at home; it gives a permanent record of what we've said. How about that?

Beyond11cisRetinol Thu 19-Apr-18 11:41:39

And yes, I've been here just shy of ten years - there are a lot of names to search through when looking for a particular post, it's rather hard to find the one I'm looking for. And that's when I know what I'm looking for, and I'm not just doing a data tidy up!

BarrackerBarmer Thu 19-Apr-18 11:44:45

I'm really glad you said that - I've been thinking the same regarding the zip file download.

I used MN like a diary of baby milestones in the early days and would be sad to lose those memories of pregnancy and breastfeeding. They are unconnected to what I write about now, with gender critical stuff, but if I can't preserve my anonymity it will all have to go.

A zip file would certainly make it easier to cherrypick out high risk posts and deal with them at a precision level.

IamXXHearMeRoar Thu 19-Apr-18 11:46:11

Surely this functionality would make life easier for hackers?

You can already see your past usernames in the account setting so can look that way?

The whole reason MN took off so quickly and strongly back in the day was the ability for posters to change names, something which was very restricted on other parenting sites.

I think the answer to all of this is to have strong security surrounding staff contracts and perhaps an educational intro for new users on their own online security.

The widespread VPN use recommendation is all very well but perhaps people don't realise that you need to use a good quality secure VPN because any one you use can in essence see everything you are doing online so logins, passwords etc.

Sorry for the slight derail there!

MojoMissing Thu 19-Apr-18 11:47:32

Do we know if Emma was an unpaid intern?

Bumblefuddle Thu 19-Apr-18 11:48:36

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

IamXXHearMeRoar Thu 19-Apr-18 11:48:40

She was paid, six month internship, close connections on staff. All on the other thread where concerns are being expressed.

Saltcrust Thu 19-Apr-18 11:48:53

Couldn't agree more IamXXhearmeroar

BarrackerBarmer Thu 19-Apr-18 11:50:46

I think we are currently in the bizarre situation IamXXHearMeRoar where hackers DO have immediate easy access to all our posts, whereas WE the users, do not!

That's the challenge - that someone inside the MN system even at a junior level can already see with greater clarity than posters themselves can in order to protect themselves.

redhalia Thu 19-Apr-18 11:54:44

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Jozxyqk Thu 19-Apr-18 11:57:30

I would be interested in this idea. Have a reasonable number of NCs over several years. I post under different names for family & personal stuff, work stuff etc. If details were hacked, anyone who knew me could identify me in an instant.

BarrackerBarmer Thu 19-Apr-18 11:58:30

As others have pointed out, as a user you can immediately see the list of all your namechanges in your account information anyway.
And you can search on them already. Just this has to be done one by one which is very laboursome.

This suggestion is only to allow searching from within your own account to be more targeted, rather than having to search each of your names one after another after another.

It doesn't increase access to anyone outside of the account holder.

The data a hacker would have access to is not changed by this move.

Quorafun Thu 19-Apr-18 12:00:10

yes please. I have no idea what I may or may not have shared over the last almost 14 years.

IamXXHearMeRoar Thu 19-Apr-18 12:03:24

There will always be a risk that staff will behave unprofessionally no matter what security is in place, the only way to secure data is to ensure that leaks will be punished by the law. That means non disclosure agreements and serious consequences.

I used to work in finance and had access to accounts of well known people in the public eye, I did not take that information because it would be stupid, illegal and unprofessional to do so. That is how data protection works. This is a fact of life that has escaped Emma Healy until now but will undoubtedly be made very clear to her today and in the future!

MN has been hacked before and the whole F4J debacle also went on for a long time and tested the limits. Long term posters know from experience that the solution is user awareness. Regular namechanges and password changes, changing of real life identifiers in posts etc.

Right now if someone stumbles across your password or username they can see some of your posts until you work it out and/or namechange (as many of us do as a matter of regular habit now). Old usernames are a bit of a faff to get to and as such not immediately downloadable. Make that a one button search and you have made a mischief seeker's quest a lot easier. I vote don't.

BarrackerBarmer Thu 19-Apr-18 12:29:18

Right now if someone stumbles across your password or username they can see some of your posts until you work it out and/or namechange (as many of us do as a matter of regular habit now). Old usernames are a bit of a faff to get to and as such not immediately downloadable.

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