Social Media giant Meta, formerly known as Facebook, has delayed its plan to have end-to-end encryption (E2EE) on Messenger and Instagram until ‘sometime in 2023’. Child safety advocates have warned that the company’s plans to encrypt users’ messages will protect its abusers from being detected.
As part of a reported “pivot to privacy,” Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg declared in 2019 that the company would work toward universally implementing end-to-end encryption across all of its services after the Cambridge Analytica data misuse incident. He didn’t point out a specific time for the rollout of E2EE; however, earlier this year, Facebook suggested it would complete the rollout in 2022.
The National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC) expressed concern about Facebook’s E2EE decision, claiming that private messaging is the “frontline of child sexual abuse online” as it prevents law enforcement and tech platforms from seeing messages by ensuring that only the sender and recipient can see their content – a process known as end-to-end encryption.
Facebook’s Messenger originally introduced encryption in their app in 2016, but it only works when users utilize the platform’s secret Conversation function. Since 2016, Facebook-owned WhatsApp has offered E2EE everywhere.
By- Shubham Kumar
(Content Writer, WCSF)