Since 2016, Messenger has had the option for people to turn on end-to-end encryption. In 2023, we began to roll out default end-to-end encryption for all personal chats and calls on Messenger and Facebook.
This has taken years to deliver because we’ve taken the time to get it right. Our engineers, cryptographers, designers, policy experts and product managers have worked tirelessly to rebuild Messenger features from the ground up. Enabling end-to-end encryption on Messenger meant fundamentally rebuilding many aspects of the application protocols to improve privacy, security, and safety while simultaneously maintaining the features that have made Messenger so popular. Our approach was to leverage prior learnings from both WhatsApp and Messenger’s Secret Conversations, and then iterate on our most challenging problems like muti-device capability, feature support, message history, and web support. Along the way, we introduced new privacy, safety and control features like app lock and delivery controls that let people choose who can message them, and improved existing safety features like report, block and message requests.
At its core, end-to-end encryption is about protecting people’s communications, so they can feel safe expressing themselves with their friends and loved ones. We worked closely with outside experts, academics, advocates and governments to identify risks and build mitigations to ensure that privacy and safety go hand-in-hand. We commissioned an independent human rights impact assessment and published an extensive white paper on Meta’s approach to safer private messaging on Messenger and Instagram DMs.