By default, Messenger now offers end-to-end encryption
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By default, Messenger now offers end-to-end encryption

Meta fulfills a long-standing promise as it commences the widespread implementation of default end-to-end encryption for Messenger, marking a significant stride in user privacy. In an announcement, Mark Zuckerberg emphasized that individual chats and calls on Messenger would now benefit from default end-to-end encryption, ensuring heightened security by preventing Meta or any third-party entities from accessing the content of conversations.

Messenger end-to-end encryption

Loredana Crisan, Meta’s Head of Messenger, expressed the meticulous effort put into achieving this milestone, stating in a blog post, “This has taken years to deliver because we’ve taken our time to get this right. Our engineers, cryptographers, designers, policy experts, and product managers have worked tirelessly to rebuild Messenger features from the ground up.”

While the end-to-end encryption feature had its initial introduction in a limited test in 2016 through the “secret conversations” mode, its gradual expansion witnessed the encryption of voice and video calls in 2021 and the introduction of the option for group chats and calls in January 2022. The recent move towards default end-to-end encryption for individual chats represents the culmination of Meta’s commitment, as announced in August 2023.

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Meta’s engineering blog shed light on the complexity of the rollout, citing the utilization of the Signal protocol and the necessity to rebuild fundamental features like the sticker library and chat storage. The adoption of this encryption standard brings Messenger closer to achieving comprehensive end-to-end protection, aligning it with other Meta-owned platforms like WhatsApp.

In tandem with this security enhancement, Meta introduces additional features for Messenger users, including the ability to edit messages within a 15-minute window after sending, speed control for voice messages, new photo and video layouts, and an updated interface for disappearing messages. The company also disclosed ongoing efforts to enable the sending of HD photos and videos on Messenger.

Messenger end-to-end encryption

This move follows Meta’s broader commitment to privacy, with plans to extend end-to-end encryption protection to Instagram DMs after completing the Messenger rollout. While default end-to-end encryption for group chats remains an opt-in feature, the company’s proactive approach reflects a broader industry shift towards prioritizing user privacy and secure communication.

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Despite the prolonged timeline, Meta’s implementation of default end-to-end encryption underscores its dedication to providing users with a secure and private messaging experience. As the company continues to refine and expand these security measures, users can anticipate a more robust and privacy-centric communication platform within the Meta ecosystem.

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