Facebook's Meta pushes back Messenger and Instagram encryption plans until 2023

Meta, the parent company of Facebook, has pushed back its plans to enable end-to-end encryption (E2EE) as the default on Facebook Messenger and Instagram until 2023. 

Messenger and and Instagram chats are on the same platform these days, reflecting the company’s push to unify its messaging products and aligning them with WhatsApp where E2EE is the default, based on Signal’s E2EE protocol. 

In April, Facebook said that Messenger and Instagram direct messages wouldn’t be “fully end-to-end encrypted until sometime in 2022 at the earliest”.

E2EE should mean that even Facebook employees with physical access to its hardware in data centers can’t access the content of messages, preventing the firm and employees from producing some evidence even when ordered by a court to do so. 

Facebook rolled out E2EE for WhatsApp iin 2016 using the protocol developed by messaging platform Signal, which gained users after Facebook announced plans to share user data between WhatsApp and Facebook to expand its offering for businesses on both platforms. 

Antigone Davis, Meta’s global head of safety, detailed Meta’s encryption challenges in an article for the UK’s The Telegraph.  

“There’s an ongoing debate about how tech companies can continue to combat abuse and support the vital work of law enforcement if we

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