Facebook Delays Plans to Use End-to-End Encryption As Default for Messenger and Instagram Messages Until at Least 2023

Facebook, now rebranded to "Meta," is delaying plans to use end-to-end encryption for Messenger and Instagram messages until at least 2023, a year later than the previous deadline promised by the social media behemoth.

General Insta Facebook Messenger Feature Blue
Writing in The Telegraph, Meta's head of global safety, Antigone Davis, said that the company is pushing back its deadline to roll out end-to-end encryption as the default for billions of Messenger and Instagram users until "sometime in 2023." Meta claims this delay is meant to give it extra time to coordinate with experts in the field of combating online abuse while also protecting user privacy.

We're taking our time to get this right and we don't plan to finish the global rollout of end-to-end encryption by default across all our messaging services until sometime in 2023. As a company that connects billions of people around the world and has built industry-leading technology, we're determined to protect people's private communications and keep people safe online.

Facebook had previously set in motion a plan to fully encrypt all messages in Messenger and Instagram in 2022, but following that announcement, government officials, institutions, and others raised concerns. Concerns amount to whether end-to-end encryption will make it harder for law enforcement to protect public and child safety.

Davis said that a balance can be and must be accomplished. "We believe people shouldn't have to choose between privacy and safety," Davis wrote, adding that Meta is "engaging with privacy and safety experts, civil society and governments to make sure we get this right."

Instagram, owned by Meta, has introduced features and changes to improve the platform for younger users, including automatically defaulting the accounts of users under the age of 18 to private. Meta is also relying on people's goodwill to combat possible abuse on its platform.

Third, we're actively encouraging people to report harmful messages to us and will prompt them to do so when we think there could be a problem. Once they do, we can view the reported message, investigate the content, offer support where appropriate, and take action where necessary. Where we find abuse, we make referrals to the authorities and respond swiftly to valid requests for data to support law enforcement investigations – as we always will.

Davis is defended the need for end-to-end encryption, citing recent cases with data requests from law enforcement showing that the majority of user information requested is non-encrypted in the first place. "While no systems are perfect, this shows that we can continue to stop criminals and support law enforcement," Davis wrote.

Meta already utilizes end-to-end encryption on WhatsApp, but that privilege is not extended by default to all Facebook Messenger and Instagram DM users. In August, Instagram said it would be testing "opt-in" end-to-end encryption chats for a limited number of adult users in certain countries. Signal, Telegram, and iMessage are all end-to-end encrypted with no need to "opt-in" to the most secure form of mobile communication.

Top Rated Comments

aloyouis Avatar
30 months ago
End to end encryption but THEY will still be reading them and lifting everything they want from the messages?

They will keep other from stealing what they steal?

So they are simply protecting their product?

LOL. FB sucks.
Score: 17 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Mac Fly (film) Avatar
30 months ago
Facebook has a bridge to sell you. I encrypt Facebook by not using Facebook.
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
TheYayAreaLiving ?️ Avatar
30 months ago
That’s fine. I don’t think anyone cares or anyone is looking forward to this.

Facebook and Privacy don’t go together. Clueless, especially with that Meta, Beta name.
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
GustavPicora Avatar
30 months ago
"...We're taking our time to get this right..." meaning, to add end-2-end encryption while still being able to sneak around when they want. Thats their definition of "right".
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)
macsorcery Avatar
30 months ago
encryption and privacy are not even in the vocabulary of people who use these apps.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
roar08 Avatar
30 months ago
Translation: we need to make sure all the backdoors are properly installed.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

Apple car wheel icon feature yellow

Apple Cancels Electric Car Project

Tuesday February 27, 2024 11:05 am PST by
Apple has canceled all plans to release an autonomous, electric vehicle, reports Bloomberg. Apple has been working on an Apple Car for more than a decade and invested millions of dollars into development before deciding it was not a viable project. Apple's Chief Operating Officer Jeff Williams today told approximately 2,000 employees working on the Apple Car that the project was canceled,...
iOS 18 Mock iPhone 16 Feature Gray

iOS 18 Rumored to Be Compatible With These iPhone Models

Tuesday February 27, 2024 6:31 am PST by
iOS 18 will be compatible with the iPhone XR, and thereby also the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max models with the same A12 Bionic chip, according to a post on X today from a private account with a proven track record of sharing build numbers for upcoming iOS updates. The post was spotted by MacRumors contributor Aaron Perris, and it has since been deleted. However, this was likely because the...
iPad Air 5

iPadOS 18 Rumored to Drop Support for These iPad Models

Tuesday February 27, 2024 6:55 am PST by
iPadOS 18 will drop support for iPad models equipped with the A10X Fusion chip, according to a post on X today from a private account with a proven track record of sharing build numbers for upcoming iOS and iPadOS updates. This means that iPadOS 18 would not be compatible with the first-generation 10.5-inch iPad Pro or the second-generation 12.9-inch iPad Pro models released in 2017. It...
Google maps feaure

Google Maps Finally Rolls Out Glanceable Directions

Wednesday February 28, 2024 2:07 am PST by
After more than a year since announcing the feature, Google Maps is finally rolling out glanceable directions on Android and iOS (via Android Police). The feature allows users to view turn-by-turn directions and a live ETA directly from their device's lock screen – information that was previously only visible when a phone was unlocked. Glanceable directions also work on the app's route...
iOS 17

iOS 17.4 Coming Soon With These New Features for Your iPhone

Monday February 26, 2024 6:08 am PST by
In a press release last month, Apple confirmed that iOS 17.4 will be released in March, and the update includes several new features and changes for the iPhone. Key new features in iOS 17.4 include major App Store changes in the EU, Apple Podcasts transcripts, and an iMessage security upgrade. The update also adds new emoji and includes preparations for the launch of next-generation CarPlay...
M3 MacBook Air Feature

New MacBook Air Models Launching Next Month: 5 Features to Expect

Wednesday February 28, 2024 1:50 am PST by
The existing 15-inch MacBook Air arrived in June 2023, which is not that long ago in terms of Mac update cycles. However, Apple released the current 13-inch ‌MacBook Air back in June 2022. It is now the oldest Mac in Apple's current crop, having not been updated in 600 days. But rumors suggest that is unlikely to be the case for much longer. According to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman, Apple has...
iOS 17

10 New Things Your iPhone Can Do in Next Month's iOS 17.4 Update

Tuesday February 27, 2024 8:18 am PST by
Apple will next month release iOS 17.4, its biggest iPhone software update of the year so far, featuring a number of features and changes that users have been anticipating for quite a while. Below, we've listed 10 new things that your iPhone will be able to do after you've installed the update, which is projected to arrive by March 7. When the day arrives, be sure to check Settings ➝...