Facebook has come under scrutiny recently for its lack of end-to-end encryption on Messenger. However, the company announced last week that it will begin beefing up privacy measures for its “Secret Conversations” feature. This tool, located within Messenger, currently supports encrypted messages, pictures, video clips, voice recordings, and stickers.
According to Facebook, it has begun testing expanded encryption options that include group messages, payments, or audio/video calling. It’s all part of the company’s broader commitment to end-to-end encryption technology, despite concerns from global governments that it could be used as a shield by bad actors. That’s why, despite measures like this change to Secret Conversations, Facebook says that a global rollout of encryption technology isn’t likely to happen anytime in the near future.
“While we expect to make more progress on default end-to-end encryption for Messenger and Instagram Direct this year, it’s a long-term project and we won’t be fully end-to-end encrypted until sometime in 2022 at the earliest,” Facebook said.
There are definite downsides to encryption that many officials and advocates have rightly called out. However, it’s ultimately a good thing that Facebook is dedicated to beefing up protections for everyday users. It’s not a perfect solution, but it’s far better than anything the social media giant offers right now.
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