Should I Use My Real Name On Discord?

Discord is a great chat application that has a ton of features. But it's also extremely vulnerable to doxxing and hacking. So should you use your real name?

What do BetterThanYou, soldMomforRP and KissmyAxe all have in common?

Yes- you guessed it, they’re all Discord usernames. It’s only common sense that dictates to us that we shouldn’t be using our actual names on Discord for security reasons. We can also have fun and get creative with selecting our usernames along the way.

We will also outline how to change your name on Discord and discuss trending security threats currently on Discord and some ways to keep you safe from hackers and doxxers on Discord in this article. So read on to learn how to keep the black hats out from your channel!

But first, in case you don’t know about Discord is; it is a messaging platform with voice call abilities similar to programs like Skype or Slack. It's software which allows you to create channels to interact with others, share media, links and more. Its popularity has risen especially among gamers for sharing updates, features and media. It reportedly has over 250 million users with at least 14 million users logging in daily.

Discord Server Names

So, we know you shouldn’t use your real identity on Discord; but how do you change your name? Here are the steps to change your Discord server name.

There is a limit to the different ways you can change your nickname on Discord. Here are the main ways:

  • The first is through the server settings. To change your username on a single server go ahead and login to discord on any server. Next, you can simply select the server you wish to change the name of. Then you can right click and open the drop-down-menu on the left-hand side of the server. You will see a drop-down arrow on the desktop and three vertical dots (or an ellipsis if you’re using a smartphone).
  • You can then select a new nickname.
  • Click on the name on the left side of the screen. Next, click on 'Server Settings' * 'Overview'
  • By entering it in the textbox, you can change the name of the server. It’s as simple as that.

You may also wish to note that It is only possible to change this setting if you own or administer the server. If you want to change your name, but aren't sure what kind of name to use, you can learn about some great Discord server names for your battles between servers. Create a Discord server name by matching these words or game names with others.

But why go through all this trouble of selecting an alias name? Well to keep the hackers and hijackers out of our lives changing our name to an unidentifiable alias is always a good start.

Especially due to some of these doxxing and scamming trends that we are seeing recently.

The ways black hats dox you

Discord is potentially being used in unforeseeable diabolical ways.This is not only for spreading malware but also as command and control servers. Essentially, Discord is being used as a base for operations led by black hats. The main intent being to steal your credentials (another reason why you shouldn't expose your true details).

Other cyber-security news to be aware of it that malware mobs have been using Discord.

In a devious attempt to spread their malicious programs. This does not mean the doxxers necessarily spread malware across Discord itself, but rather use Discord’s CDN for the hosting of their indespicable files. They upload the host file to Discord where victims click a well disguised url.

This is convenient for doxxers as these links often have Discord’s domain name right at the beginning of the url, leading to a great deal of credibility for trusting individuals who are oblivious to such deceptions. A great chunk of people will trust this link because of Discords credibility and happily click download and execute.

Whatever sneaky kinder-surprise is contained within these particular malevolent links awaiting their victims; we know it's going to be a bad egg. These links also often spread like wild-fire via forums, emails, etc. These downloadable files are often disguised as cracked versions of games, though are encapsulated by viruses. There may also be cunning mining bots attached. This becomes like an interminable game of Russian-roulette, with more and more malware and links attached in endless cycles of attacks.

Even if you delete a file you sent via Discord, it can still be found in every chamber with varying degrees of awfulness. Download links will still work in perpetuity for files that appear to stay on Discord servers indefinitely! They will still work even when deleted in Discord itself. As a response to such attacks Discord stated that they rely on a combination of pro-active scanning and reaction based reports to detect malware and viruses. They state that as soon as they are aware they try to eradicate such content immediately.

A lot of bold claims without many solutions presented by Discord, but in all fairness there is not much to be done except from banning the sharing of such executables or anything that could host them like ZIP and RAR files. Or ultimately if they get really bad they could ban the ability to extract them altogether.

The devilish deals don't end there. There have been countless other scams and hacks on Discord. For example, a few months ago researchers discovered that Discord was also being used as a common and control server. In other words, computers which were infected by malware would connect indirectly to a rogue Discord server being fed additional malicious commands.

The principle behind it is so that it is indistinguishable from all other regular Discord traffic. It would also make it extremely difficult for anti-virus software to discern whether it was a friend sending you ridiculously bad memes or the commands telling a victim computer to send over all of your saved passwords. It is very convenient for doxxers to use Discord for these purposes as it is quick and easy to set-up, compounded by the fact that these thieves need a system to act as a command control server anyway.

This malware is designed to also steal things like steam credentials and other saved passwords, cookies, and even PayPal and credit card information. The scary thing is that it's very early days and the devious scams and attacks we predict are only going to keep getting worse over time. We hope that Discord finds ways to mitigate these issues as they become more wide-spread but in the meantime there are precautions that you can take other than changing your name to protect yourself.

How to stop the black hats?

Of course do not blindly trust any url links that are shared with you. Also do not click on any files hosted on Discord. Ensure that you are wise about who you allow into your Discord circle. Ensure you take all additional security steps such as the 2 step authentication option which you can read more about here in our article discussing How to prevent getting Doxxed on Discord.

Here you will find a guide about all the additional security settings concerning Discord, such as how to create roles and rights, how to enable 2fa authentication, and covering topics such as using the right VPN to protect yourself and switching on the Explicit content filter. If you’re still afraid and want to know more about avoiding these sharks from gobbling you right up; visit our blog which provides the latest Cybersecurity news; Pragmatic Paranoia, paranoia at its best!