Facebook won’t encrypt Messenger messages by default until 2022
Here is some unfortunate news for those of you who love Facebook Messenger. Facebook will not encrypt Facebook Messenger messages by default until at least 2022. This also affects Instagram chats. Neither will have default encryption anytime soon.
However, it is possible to enable end-to-end encryption for Facebook Messenger. The ability to do this has been around since 2016. But, in order to do this, users need to switch to a “Secret conversation“Fashion. Unfortunately, Instagram doesn’t offer any type of end-to-end encryption for its chats.
Now, for some people, maybe it doesn’t matter to them. But, for users who are increasingly aware of what social media companies can see, it can be a bummer. Facebook Messenger has huge reach, which means a lot of people use it to communicate with family, friends, and maybe even coworkers.
Today, May 3, 2021, Facebook updated its safety and security plans and announced these updates in a blog. There was more information in the blog, but the main part on end-to-end encryption mentions the 2022 timeline.
While we would expect to make more progress on the default end-to-end encryption for Messenger and Instagram Direct this year, this is a long-term project and we won’t be fully end-to-end encrypted until then. 2022 at the earliest. Additionally, the security features we have already introduced are designed to work with end-to-end encryption, and we plan to continue to build strong security features into our services.
Facebook won’t encrypt Facebook Messenger messages or Instagram chats until at least 2022
Facebook has started the plan to implement end-to-end encryption on all of its messaging platforms 2019. To be clear, there are many other platforms that offer end-to-end encryption.
Of course, there’s Apple’s iMessage which has end-to-end encryption. But this is only for Apple users. But, there is a signal, Telegram, Wickr Me, and more.
So it’s interesting to see the company dragging its feet in the mud. The company could find itself in a position where users are starting to move away from their email platforms in favor of more secure platforms.
Now 2022 is not that far away, so users can be okay with waiting. But it’s something that a business like Facebook could easily implement. Making messages encrypted by default might be one of the easiest ways for a business to show its commitment to privacy.
This would also provide a feature offered by competitors. In doing so, Facebook’s current user base would not be tempted to change. Hopefully the company decides to ramp up its end-to-end encryption plans, but only time will tell.