Sharing Tox IDs

WARNING: If you are looking for shorter and more memorable IDs, remember that the relation between any kind of names and Tox IDs is neither protected nor ensured by the Tox protocol. By the nature of name services you put full trust into unverified third party data and also get that data over a different, insecure protocol. The safest way to share your Tox ID is by giving your Tox ID directly over a secure channel. The only reliable registry with names of your contacts is your personal contact list. To make it safe you should also set your own permanent labels (names/aliases) on the contacts in the list. In the absence of other, unchangeable means to identify the contact (e.g. public key, identicon, chat history), the ability of contacts to freely change their display names in your contact list is totally insecure. Fortunately, most clients allow viewing a contact's public key, which cannot be fabricated, or have other means to identify the contact by.

Below are some of the ways to share Tox IDs and their benefits and drawbacks. This is an attempt to address the different things that can come into play when initially authenticating a Tox user.

In Person, Manual Verification

In this scenario, 2 people with Tox IDs meet in person (or using any other secure channel), and exchange the IDs in front of each other, enter the IDs manually, and send a test message. This is equivalent to manually verifying a fingerprint in OTR.

Using Tox URIs to ease entering Tox IDs, Manual Out-Of-Channel Verification

In this scenario, a user creates a Tox URI which is used to help fill out the Add Friend form in a Tox client supporting Tox URI feature and registered in your system as Tox URI handler application. The security of this method depends on the security of the method used to transfer the Tox URI. See Also.

Useful resources for verification of regular OTR Identities

I'm going to use this information to come up with the content of this page. The principles need to be adapted for Tox but some of them still apply.

EFF's How To Use OTR on Window's Guide See sections “Chatting Securely” to “Working with Other Software.”

Cypherpunks guide to Authentication The most complete guide to the traditional methods of verifying OTR fingerprints with libpurple.

Adium Off-The-Record Documentation Pretty decent glossary.