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Introducing Message Simulation

Zac Glover
Message Simulation blog image on Phantom's website

    Message signing can be confusing (and risky)

    In web3, when you interact with decentralized applications (dapps), you have to sign messages to prove that you’re the owner of a given crypto wallet. Sometimes these messages are understandable, but sometimes they look like this:

    Traditional signed message image on Phantom's website
    A traditional signed message

    This lack of clarity makes it hard to know what you’re signing. And without knowing what you’re signing, you’re at greater risk of submitting a malicious message, which could cause you to lose your funds or, worse, get drained. The worst part? You’re still at risk even if you store your assets using a hardware wallet like Ledger. But don’t worry, we’re changing this…

    Message Simulation makes messages simple and safe

    With Message Simulation, you see and know what you’re signing before you submit. So, rather than guessing, you’ll know all the relevant details upfront, such as the network, estimated balance changes, assets or items, and more. Plus, everything is spelled out in simple language, which is highly important for safety.

    By previewing your messages with Message Simulation, you can see and avoid scams. If anything looks fraudulent or risky, we’ll let you know.

    Here’s how we protect you from message scams:

    • We decode messages and provide estimated changes, if available, with detailed metadata about the potential effects of messages.
    • We display warnings about messages with context about their severity.
    • We block messages that are deemed to be scams.

    See what you’re signing

    Now that you understand the issue with traditional signed messages and how Message Simulation solves them, let’s take a look at actual messages.

    Here’s a signed message with Message Simulation on Phantom versus other wallets:

    Signed message: Phantom vs other wallets image on Phantom's website
    Signed message: Phantom vs other wallets

    As you can see, with other wallets, signed messages are complicated and hard to understand, especially for beginners. But with Message Simulation, all the details are clear and simple. You know (1) what you’re signing and (2) the expected outcome, which helps you stay safe. And even if a scam slips by you, we got your back…

    When you sign messages on Ethereum and Polygon, we:

    ⚠️ Display real-time warnings with context about the severity BEFORE you sign 🚫 Block messages that have been deemed to be scams by @blowfishxyz

    Message Simulation popup blog image on Phantom's website
    Message Simulation popup

    We believe this is another great step in making it safer and more transparent for you to interact with your favorite dapps, sites, and marketplaces.

    Try Message Simulation with some of your favorites

    Message Simulation is available with a select number of trusted protocols:

    We’ll continue to expand Message Simulation to more apps moving forward to increase the transparency and security around signed messages.

    Explore web3 with confidence

    With Message Simulation, Transaction Simulation, and other key safeguards, we’re making web3 simple and safe to navigate. Through these measures, you can have peace of mind every time you browse a dapp, buy crypto, and collect NFTs on Phantom. But we’re not stopping here. We’ll continue to ship new products and features to make it safe and easy for you to explore web3.