Category Archives: Encryption
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Default end-to-end encryption is finally coming to Messenger and Facebook - Popular Science
Meta Platforms has fulfilled a longstanding promise by introducing default end-to-end encryption for one-on-one conversations and calls on Facebook Messenger. The company asserts that with this encryption enabled, only the sender and recipient of a message can access its contents. Initially introduced as an opt-in feature in 2016, end-to-end encrypted texts and calls for individual discussions will now be the standard, marking a significant milestone after an extended development process.
Loredana Crisan, VP of Messenger, expressed, "This has taken years to deliver because we've taken our time to get this right." The team, including engineers, cryptographers, designers, policy experts, and product managers, worked diligently to rebuild Messenger features comprehensively.
Despite the encryption shift, Crisan assured users that popular Messenger features like themes and custom reactions would remain unaffected. However, she cautioned that the transition to default encryption might "take some time" for all Messenger chats.
While this move is a positive stride, The Verge notes that end-to-end encryption for group Messenger chats remains opt-in. Additionally, default encryption is yet to extend to Instagram messages, although Meta had previously indicated its implementation shortly after private Messenger chats.
In 2019, CEO Mark Zuckerberg outlined the company's intention to embrace encrypted ephemeral messages across its messaging apps. Zuckerberg wrote in a Facebook post, "I believe the future of communication will increasingly shift to private, encrypted services."
The implementation of default encryption implies that Meta won't have visibility into the contents of most Messenger chats, nor can it hand them over to law enforcement. This shift comes in the wake of a notable case where law enforcement obtained Messenger chat history in a criminal investigation. Despite concerns from anti-encryption advocates about the challenges it poses for identifying bad actors, Meta remains committed to enhancing user privacy across its messaging platforms.
Meta Platforms has rolled out end-to-end encryption for all personal chats and calls on both Messenger and Facebook. The end-to-end encryption feature will be available for use immediately, the social media giant said, but it may take some time for all Messenger accounts to be updated with the new technology.
Messenger users have had the option to turn on end-to-end encryption since 2016. This feature allows messages to be read only by the sender and its recipients. Once this change is implemented, messages will be thereafter encrypted by default. This encryption can help keep users safe from hackers.
Metas blog post reveals the encryption for personal messages and calls on both Facebook and Messenger, along with a suite of features that allow users to further control their experience. These features are part of the companys responsible effort to ensure a safer, more secure, and private service.
Weve introduced new privacy, safety and control features along the way like delivery controls that let people choose who can message them, and app lock, alongside existing safety features like report, block and message requests. 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, the post reads.
Meta has also added an editing messages feature for messages that users want to change for up to 15 minutes after sending them. Meta will be able to see the previous versions of the edited message.Disappearing messages on Messenger, which currently last for 24 hours after sending, will be improved to make it easier to tell when disappearing messages are turned on.
The change will roll into Instagram as well sometime in 2024, people familiar with the matter told The Wall Street Journal. However, encryption is not without its critics. Critics of the rollout include U.S. law enforcement agencies, who have argued that encrypted messages can shield criminals, including child predators and terrorists.
Meta, the company that makes Facebook Messenger and owns the similar instant-messaging platform WhatsApp, has announced that it finally supports end-to-end encryption as standard with that being the default for all new chats. The move comes after Meta promised to make this change some time ago. Messenger has been around since 2016 and launched against a very different instant messaging backdrop.
By adding end-to-end encryption Facebook Messenger ensures that all messages and calls are protected from snooping eyes before they leave the sending device. They are then unencrypted when they are received at the other end, with nobody between those two points able to decipher what was going on. That also goes for Meta, although that will change should the message be reported for violation of the Facebook Messenger terms.
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Meta does say that it might take a little while for all chats to be updated with the new default, but there will be no limitation on the functionality that is available to the people using those chats once end-to-end encryption has been enabled.
Meta's Head of Messenger, Loredana Crisan, also noted that the company has introduced new privacy, safety, and control features over the years since Messenger launched in 2016 in an attempt to make the messaging platform safer for people to use.
Other tweaks to this latest release of Facebook Messenger include the ability to edit messages for up to 15 minutes after they were sent, while disappearing messages now last for 24 hours after being sent. There is also the option di enable or disable read receipts for those who don't always want to be under pressure to respond immediately.
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Facebook Messenger is now end-to-end encrypted as standard - TweakTown
Meta is rolling out end-to-end encryption for personal messages and calls on Messenger and Facebook, finally delivering on a pledge it committed to some time ago.
Messenger encryption originally arrived in 2016 in the form of "secret conversations," and plans to extend the platform's cryptographic features have been floated ever since.
According to Loredana Crisan, Head of Messenger, Meta is only now turning on end-to-end encryption for all messages and calls between two people after years spent "rebuilding Messenger features from the ground up."
Since 2016, Messenger has had the option for people to turn on end-to-end encryption, but we're now changing private chats and calls across Messenger to be end-to-end encrypted by default. This has taken years to deliver because we've taken our time to get this right. Our engineers, cryptographers, designers, policy experts and product managers have worked tirelessly to rebuild Messenger features from the ground up. We've introduced new privacy, safety and control features along the way like delivery controls that let people choose who can message them, as well as app lock, alongside existing safety features like report, block and message requests. 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.
The extra layer of security provided by end-to-end encryption means that the content of messages and calls are protected from the moment they leave the sender's device to the moment they reach the receiver's device. In other words, nobody, including Meta, can see what is sent or said, unless the message is reported.
End-to-end encrypted conversations also offer additional functionality including the ability to edit messages, higher media quality, and disappearing messages.
Meta notes that end-to-end encryption won't prevent users from using features like themes and custom reactions, but "it may take some time for Messenger chats to be updated with default end-to-end encryption."
As things stand, end-to-end encryption for group Messenger chats remains opt-in, and Meta previously said that Instagram messages will be encrypted "shortly after" the rollout of default encryption for Messenger chats.
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Facebook Messenger Rolls Out End-to-End Encryption by Default - MacRumors
7 December 2023
Image source, Getty Images
All Facebook and Messenger chats will be encrypted automatically, parent company Meta has announced.
Messages and calls protected by end-to-end-encryption (E2EE) can be read only by the sender and recipient.
It has been possible to opt in to encrypted messages for years, but now it will become the default position.
Critics, including the UK government and police, claim the move to default encryption will make it harder to detect child sexual abuse on Messenger.
The Home Secretary, James Cleverly, said he was "incredibly disappointed" by Meta's decision after working together to tackle other online harms.
"We'll continue to work closely with them (Meta) to keep children safe online, but we must be honest that in our view, this is a significant step back", he said.
James Babbage, director general for threats at the National Crime Agency, was also highly critical.
"It is hugely disappointing that Meta is choosing to roll out end-to-end encryption on Facebook Messenger.
"Today our role in protecting children from sexual abuse and exploitation just got harder," he said.
Privacy and safety
The switch to encryption meant nobody, including Meta, can see what is sent or said, "unless you choose to report a message to us", Loredana Crisan, head of Messenger, wrote in a post announcing the change.
The company had worked with outside experts, academics, advocates and governments to identify risks to "ensure that privacy and safety go hand-in-hand", she wrote.
It is expected that messages in Instagram, which is also owned by Meta, may get encryption by default sometime in the new year.
Meta says that people will know when their chats are upgraded and become encrypted, because they will be prompted to set up a recovery method to be able to restore their messages if they lose, change or add a device.
Apps including iMessage, Signal and WhatsApp all protect the privacy of messages with E2EE, but the tech has become a political battleground.
The apps and their supporters argue the tech protects privacy and security, including that of children.
But law enforcement, major children's charities and the government have opposed the expansion of E2EE.
New powers in the recently passed Online Safety Act could enable Ofcom to force tech companies to scan for child abuse material in encrypted messages. Signal and WhatsApp have said they will refuse to comply with such requests.
But despite those powers, there has been continued pressure on Meta to hold the expansion of E2EE.
In September the-then Home Secretary, Suella Braverman, alleged that Facebook Messenger and Instagram direct messages were the platforms of choice for online paedophiles, telling the BBC that "we are arresting in this country about 800 perpetrators a month, we are safeguarding about 1,200 children a month from this evil crime".
But Meta argued that it had spent years developing robust safety measures to prevent, detect and combat abuse while maintaining online security.
"When E2EE is default, we will also use a variety of tools, including artificial intelligence, subject to applicable law, to proactively detect accounts engaged in malicious patterns of behaviour instead of scanning private messages," the company wrote.
Prof Martin Albrecht, chair of cryptography at King's College London, welcomed the addition of what he called a standard safety feature.
"It secures not only government and business communication, but also private conversations between parents and their children, parents about their children, or groups of friends of all ages," he said.
Campaign group Privacy International backed the tech firm's decision. Encryption, it told the BBC, was "an essential defence, shielding journalists, human rights defenders, lawyers, artists, and marginalised groups from potential abuse by data-hungry companies and governments".
But Susie Hargreaves, chief executive of the Internet Watch Foundation, which works to identify and remove child sexual abuse material online, said it was outraged that Meta had chosen to "prioritise the privacy of paedophiles over the safety of our children".
She accused the platform, which she noted had a strong track record of detecting large amounts of child abuse material before it ended up on its services, of "effectively rolling out the welcome mat for paedophiles".
It was now up to Ofcom "to show its teeth", Ms Hargreaves said.
The firm also announced on Wednesday that it would add a number of new features, including the ability to edit messages for up to 15 minutes after they have been sent.
It will also give users the ability to control if people who send messages receive "read receipts" telling them a message has been read.
The changes will take some months to fully roll out, the company said.
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Facebook and Messenger to automatically encrypt messages - BBC.com
Breaking News: Messenger Boosts Privacy Metas Bold Move Towards WhatsApp-Like Encryption | by J. A. Jackson … – Medium
In a groundbreaking move, Meta is set to enhance the privacy of its Messenger app, mirroring the security features of its sibling, WhatsApp. This major update will see personal calls and chats on Messenger encrypted by default, a significant stride in safeguarding user communications. Dive into the evolution of Metas encryption strategy and the implications for user privacy.
Meta takes a giant leap in the realm of privacy as Messenger gears up to fortify its security, echoing the protective shield of WhatsApp. Uncover the layers of encryption shaping the digital conversations of millions, revolutionizing the way we connect in the digital age.
Meta announced a paradigm shift by default encrypting personal calls and messages on Messenger. This transformative update aligns the service more closely with WhatsApp, offering users enhanced security and control over their digital conversations. The move represents a significant stride towards ensuring user privacy and confidentiality.
The implementation of default end-to-end encryption is backed by strategic cryptographic principles, including in-house developments and inspiration from the secure Signal messaging app. This multi-faceted approach reflects Metas commitment to adopting the latest and most robust encryption technologies for the benefit of its users.
Loredana Crisan, the head of Messenger, underscores the groundbreaking nature of this update, emphasizing that the encryption ensures utmost privacy. With nobody, including Meta, having access to the encrypted content, users are empowered to communicate with confidence, knowing their messages remain secure.
Step into the digital living room of the future as Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg expresses his vision for private, encrypted services. The journey from past data-privacy challenges to this momentous encryption update unveils a commitment to user security and a more confidential online experience.
Metas encryption push sparks a broader conversation around user privacy, law enforcement investigations, and the challenges posed by encrypted services. As the company bolsters security, speculation arises regarding the potential impact on law enforcement efforts and the ongoing debate on balancing privacy with the need for online safety.
Mark Zuckerbergs vision for a more private, encrypted online space takes a significant step forward with Metas latest encryption update on Messenger. The companys commitment to user security and confidentiality underscores a transformative shift towards a more protected digital landscape.
Photo byImage from Creative Commons Canstock, Pexel, made on Canva!
(042522 BOSTON, MA): A demonstrator holds a sign during a rally calling for affordable MBTA fares for those with a low-income held outside the Park St T station on April 25, 2022 in BOSTON, MA. (Staff Photo By Nancy Lane/MediaNews Group/Boston Herald)
Agency staffers are developing the details of a low-income fare program that would expand reduced fare options for certain groups, including students, young adults, seniors and people with disabilities.
The pending policy could reach between 50,000-60,000 riders over the first five years, said Steven Povich, the MBTAs senior director of fare policy and analytics.
Estimates show that there are roughly 60,000 adults ages 26 to 64 who have incomes under 200% of the federal poverty level but have no reduced MBTA fare benefits, Povich said. Slashing their fares in half could translate into $720 in annual savings for daily bus and subway riders, and $1,908 for certain commuter rail riders.
This is really significant savings for our riders across our network, whether youre a frequent or infrequent rider, whether youre on the bus and subway network, or the commuter rail, Povich said. The annual savings are really material.
Meta is rolling out end-to-end encryption for calls and messages across its Facebook and Messenger platforms, the company announced Thursday.
Such encryption means that no one other than the sender and the recipient not even Meta can decipher peoples messages. Encrypted chats, first introduced as an optional feature in Messenger in 2016, will now be the standard for all users going forward, according to Messenger head Loredana Crisan.
This has taken years to deliver because weve taken our time to get this right, Crisan wrote in a blog post. Our engineers, cryptographers, designers, policy experts and product managers have worked tirelessly to rebuild Messenger features from the ground up.
The new features will be available immediately, but Crisan wrote that it would take some time for the privacy feature to be rolled out to all of its users.
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Ticker: MBTA expanding fare discounts; Meta rolls out end-to-end encryption - Boston Herald
End-to-end encryption is the main feature of Protons software. The Swiss software developer started with Proton Mail a few years ago, and now operates a variety of useful apps that you can bundle together or use separately, depending on your needs. Proton Drive is one of them, offering a great cloud alternative to Google Drive, iCloud, Microsoft OneDrive, and others.
Every Proton account gets free Proton Drive storage, though youll want to go premium if you need significantly more space for your documents and photos.
Were most likely to back up photos and videos on our phones. Thats where the new Proton Drive feature comes in handy. Youll be able to automatically back up your photos to the cloud, starting with Android. The iPhone app will get a similar feature down the road.
You might be already backing up photos to the cloud with Google Photos or Apples iCloud. As the recent Google Drive data issues have proven, you can never be too careful when it comes to storing your stuff in the cloud. It might be a good idea to keep separate cloud and physical backups of key information in your life, including photos and videos.
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Thats where the new Proton Drive photo backup feature will help, with an added benefit. It comes with end-to-end encryption, which means nobody gets to see your photos or metadata associated with them. Think location information and file names associated with your images:
Photos are in many ways even more sensitive than other kinds of information. They hold emotional value, but they also quietly contain troves of vital data, from your biometrics to your precise location. You may also take pictures of sensitive documents, like your passport, Social Security card, driving license, or tax returns.
The Android app will let you quickly enable photo backup. All you need to do is give Proton Drive access to the photos stored on your Android device. After that, syncing will begin, and youll be able to access your photos on any device.
A similar feature is in beta for Proton Drive for iOS and should be available to iPhone and iPad users in the future.
Proton further explained in a blog post on Thursday that once you back your photos and videos to the cloud, youll be able to easily view and browse though your collection.
The files will be organized in chronological order for easy navigation. As expected, you can manage your photo library in the cloud, which means you can download and/or delete files. Marking files as available offline means youll get access to them even when theres no internet connection.
Aside from the iPhone app, Proton also plans to add other photo-related features to backups. The company is working on support for albums and automatic categorization based on photo types. Unspecified smarter features are also coming to a future version of Proton Drive, which will use on-device machine learning. This likely refers to editing photos in the cloud.
You can test Proton Drive by getting started at this link. You get up to 1GB of free storage, with premium plans starting at $3.99 per month for 200GB of storage. Bundles that include other Proton services might be an even better idea.