News, updates and operation logs of unified/ban.

What about Privacy?

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In this short post we explain why unified/ban is privacy friendly, and we clarify some of the choices that lead the bot to operate differently than others.

Privacy
unified/ban saves only permanent data, which can be found publicly (user_id and chat_id). All the "mutable" data, such as (name, surname, username), are parameters that give a "face" to the user, in fact saving this data in relation to a user_id, you always get the identity of the person .
We do not save these data precisely to avoid creating a database that traces the identity of these users.

Although the user_id is present in our database, we do not save other details that allow us to track or otherwise know who the individual is.

What does it mean to save changeable data?
Despite the certainty of those behind other projects, their databases are loaded with mutable data, flanked by a user_id. In this way it is possible to trace the username change of a user, even if the user decides to "remove his own tracks".

We don't want to point the finger at other "competing" bots and we are sure of their good faith but we are also furm on our standpoint that tracing mutable data without the user's consent and warning is a violation of their privacy.

Commands
Our bot does not work with the user username. This means that commands like / ban /unban /limit /unlimit /kick, don't work by supplying a username as a parameter. This is precisely because we do not save this data in our database. To use these commands you must reply to a message from the user concerned or take advantage of the controls provided by Telegram.

Edit: We have been requested over and over again to allow the use of the username in the commands (ex. /ban username , /kick username ), we have studied and applied a solution respectful of privacy: we created a volatile username cache. With every processed message we fill the temporary cache with the tuple user_id - username . The commands that accept the username as argument are checking in this cache if the user is known and if not then you have an error message. At each shutdown or reboot the cache is lost and is never saved on file, database or any external service.

Operations and events
All bot operations are based on an ID, provided publicly by telegram:
- message_id
- chat_id
- user_id
unified/ban uses these IDs to keep record of its operations. From the dashboard, it is possible to view a list of the last operations.

All the "extra" data used to make the bot functional, such as badword and safename, for instance, at bound to the chat_id pf the concerned group and only shown to the administrators of that specific group.

Stored data
All stored data is removed once the group is deleted from the dashboard and the bot is left the group.

Source code
The source of our bot is public and it is possible to see how manage your data.

For doubts and clarifications, use the dedicated button in the bot configuration menu or access @unifiedban_group