How to Enable End-to-End Encryption on Facebook Messenger

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Meta’s Messenger app is one of the popular instant messaging apps available. Messenger is feature-rich, but end-to-end encryption has been missing on the platform for far too long. However, Messenger now includes an end-to-end encryption feature. The only caveat is this feature is not enabled by default.

This article will show you the two ways you can use to enable end-to-end encryption on Messenger.


Why Messenger’s End-to-End Encryption Matters

Before we showcase how to enable end-to-end encryption on Messenger, you might be wondering, “what is end-to-end encryption?” and why is it important. First, end-to-end encryption is a key security feature that ensures that the data you transfer via the internet is secure from prying eyes who might be watching your network.

End-to-end encryption prevents the so-called man-in-the-middle attack, one of the many ways an attacker can get hold of your data. With this in mind, end-to-end encryption is important, and no wonder it has become a standard feature on communication platforms.

This is why Meta’s move to add end-to-end encryption on Messenger matters. It ensures that any data you send via the platform can’t be read or secretly modified by a third party apart from the sender and the receiver. Now that you understand why this feature is essential, you should ensure that it is enabled on any platform where it’s optional, like Messenger.

How to Enable End-to-End Encryption on Messenger

You can enable end-to-end encryption on Messenger in two ways. You could either use the built-in vanish mode feature or rely on Messenger’s secret conversations. We’ll show you how to do it step-by-step via both ways, starting with vanish mode.

1. Using Vanish Mode

Vanish mode is a feature that lets you send temporary messages to anyone you’re chatting with on Messenger. The app automatically deletes the messages sent in vanish mode when you exit the chat.

To enter vanish mode on Messenger, open an active chat thread and swipe up. This will allow you to start chatting with your friend securely using end-to-end encryption by default until you leave the chat and everything is automatically deleted. You can also use vanish mode on Instagram via the same procedure.

2. Using Secret Conversations

Messenger’s Secret Conversations feature also has end-to-end encryption built-in. What makes Secret Conversations different is it creates a safe space where you and your friend can talk securely without even worrying about Facebook prying on your chats.

You can share anything, including Messages, Pictures, Stickers, Videos, and Voice recordings. The special thing about Secret Conversations is you won’t be able to see the messages from previous secret conversations on a new device since they’re tied to one device.

However, you have the option to add multiple devices so that you can view your secret chats across various devices. Keep in mind Secret Conversations is only available via Messenger’s Android, iOS, and iPadOS apps.

Here’s how to start a secret chat on Messenger:

  1. On your Messenger home tab, tap the Edit button in the top right.
  2. Tap the Secret toggle in the top right to enable it (Shown as a padlock).
  3. Select or search for a contact you wish to chat with secretly.
  4. If you like, tap the timer icon next to the input bar to make the messages disappear after a certain time.

Alternatively, you can open an active chat thread, tap the i button at the top-right, and select Go to secret conversation under More actions.

Remember that when you start a secret conversation with someone you already have a regular chat thread with, you’ll see two different threads on your end. The secure one will have a padlock icon next to the receiver’s profile picture.

Use End-to-End Encryption on Messenger

Now that you know how to enable end-to-end encryption on Messenger, always use this method to chat with your friends and family for security reasons. Vanish mode is one of the ways of enabling end-to-end encryption on Messenger, and you should use this if you want to send sensitive messages that should destruct after you exit the chat immediately.


On the other hand, secret conversations provide the best of both worlds, allowing you to chat securely and let your chats live forever or set a timeline for when Messenger should automatically delete them.



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