How anonymous is the anonymous mode?

In the anonymous mode, it is not clear how strong is this anonymity.

Are the discourse admins able to identify the user? Are the server admins able to identify the user? Or is this untraceable?


There’s really only two ways that I know of to deanonymize an anonymous mode account, one is IP matching the accounts and the other would be checking the mapping records in the database that maps the anonymous accounts to the real user.


The IP address method is not reliable.

Yes, any admin can look it up.


Sorry, a bad habit slipped in there when I replied. On a rather large instance I’m a moderator on I get yelled at for posting responses that are too detailed, so I tend to answer the question without going into too much detail. I forgot that here it’s actually okay to get into the details. :slight_smile:

Thank you for posting that link, I knew I’d seen an DE query on here that could look it up with a topic and post id before but couldn’t find it when searching. :slight_smile:

I don’t usually need to do that kind of lookup so I usually use a query that just dumps the 20 most recent anonymous mode accounts and their associated users. :slight_smile:


You might want to minimize the amount of privacy that you violate :wink:

We don’t use anonymous mode for general posting. We use it to run short story contests where the stories are posted anonymously and after voting closes the posters are revealed. The DE query we use is only used by the script that runs at the end of the contest to change the post owners to the real users. :slight_smile:


That’s a pretty cool use case for the anonymous posting function!


I thought so too. :slight_smile: @ClawdiaWolf Is there a chance you could create a topic on it and show me how it’s done?

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