The world has embraced social media so well that some would rightly say it is to the detriment of privacy and vis-à-vis interaction. Every now and then, we are reminded of the insecurity and frailty of our supposed secure secret conversations, login details and other personal documents on the social media by hackers. Consequently, ensuring and assuring internet security and privacy has become foremost on the agenda of most social media websites and social applications. In this regard, Facebook is beginning to test end-to-end encryption on the Facebook Messenger. Privacy has not always been Facebook’s strong suit but the world’s largest social media network is taking steps to rectify that status.
This upcoming end-to-end encryption will offer users a number of privacy options that will be much to the dismay of data thieves as well as eavesdroppers and to the delight of messenger users. Facebook explicitly states that the message that will be sent through Facebook Messenger in the end-to-end encryption mode will be totally secure and not even accessible to them.
That said; let’s take a look at the offerings of the end-to-end encryption, shall we? First of all, a Messenger user will have to activate the end-to-end encryption manually. This is best when you intend sharing sensitive information with a person; say your doctor, accountant, lawyer or spouse. In the encrypted mode, you can only communicate with the person on the other end on one device, if you should switch devices, the previous messages will not appear on the new device – tough one, right? Another cool feature is the timer option, which allows you to set a time limit that the message you are sending will be visible to the message recipient. This feature is very much like Snapchat’s timed messages but only better cause you get to set the time.
The downside to all this super security is that for now this mode won’t be supporting full expression compared to the plain messenger mode as the end-to-end encryption mode does not support sending of GIF’s, video’s, making payments or other popular messenger features. Facebook says “ secret conversations are available on a limited test basis right now, but will be making the option more widely available this summer”. So we should all be waiting patiently for it to come, it most likely will not require downloading a new Facebook messenger app as it would be a server-side change, if this is not case, I am sure you will agree with me that it doesn’t matter provided you get more security.
To be better acquainted with how to use the upcoming end-to-end encryption option on the Facebook messenger, Facebook has provided a short instructional video. You can find it at the end of this post.
That’s all we have on this one, what do you think about this new security coming your way?