Facebook Messenger and Instagram E2E encryption delayed until 2023

The default end-to-end encryption across messaging services pushed back by a year at least

Facebook and Instagram gets E2E encryption much later than intendedMeta delays the encryption rollout to 2023.

Facebook says that due to user safety, the encryption is set to be postponed until 2023. Meta, the company of Instagram, Facebook, and WhatsApp, disclosed that the rollout of end-to-end encryption across the services is pushed a year back from the original date of the release.[1] The company states that the earlier timeline was changed because it is important to ensure the end-to-end encryption[2] cannot hamper efforts to stop the risk of hackers and cyber security.

The head of safety at Meta, Antigone Davis, stated over the weekend:

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.

The company said that non-encrypted data, account information, and reports from users should help improve the safety of the services and help fight possible abuse. Users should have more control with the option to flag suspicious or harmful messages. The full end-to-end encryption was the goal of Meta company that was supposed to be achieved ” in 2022 at the earliest”.[3]

The solution of E2E encryption – the “private future”

In 2019, Mark Zuckerberg, the CEO of Facebook, had the “future is private” idea and announced that the messaging applications across the services need to and going to be end-to-end encrypted.[4] According to the company, the core products like the most popular social media applications Instagram and Facebook, could become a more private network. It was talked about private communications, end-to-end encryption solutions, and how crucial it is to achieve these goals.

This encryption means that no one can read messages you send, and access to the messages can only be granted to the participants of the conversation. When this is the default feature and not manually turned on function, no other person, not Facebook, not Instagram or Meta, can read the messages.

Meta company is the parent of WhatsApp that has this end-to-end encryption by default already.[5] Facebook Messenger has the secret conversation mode that allows the users to enable the E2E encryption when they want to be more private. The feature was launched with the Messenger app updates in 2016. Instagram has no such feature.

Secret Conversations by default might need to wait for a reason?

This is the feature needed for user privacy, but law enforcement or other government authorities might not be happy with the feature. This means that even illegal activities become inaccessible and indiscoverable. This is the question of criminal activities and a free pass to break the law. Meta claims that users can be kept safe and their conversations private still.

There are many questions and complaints because of this law enforcement investigation block. There are various problems with such wider encryption protections because these solutions can help protect abusers and other content that could be considered problematic or dangerous.

This more private encryption solution plan can tamper with victim protection and criminal acts. India has already issued a requirement for the messaging apps to trace the originator of the message in WhatsApp. This is the initial breaking of the end-to-end encryption safeguard and invading users' privacy.[6]

About the author
Gabriel E. Hall
Gabriel E. Hall - Passionate web researcher

Gabriel E. Hall is a passionate malware researcher who has been working for 2-spyware for almost a decade.

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