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How to Encrypt Facebook Messages on Android

By Carrie Murray, Friday, August 11, 2017

As the prevalence of social media continues to rise, privacy becomes a bigger concern. In response to public concern about privacy, Facebook launched secret conversation feature to its Messenger app for iOS and Android. Based on Signal encryption protocol, Facebook messages are encrypted end-to-end, which means the messages can be viewed by the sender and the viewer only - not even Facebook itself. 

Unlike WhatsApp’s end-to-end encryption, which encrypts all messages by default, Facebook’s encryption only apply to secret conversations on Messenger. This post is going to show you how to use have secret conversations on Messenger if you haven’t started it yet. 

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How to Encrypt Facebook Messages on Android

Facebook enables secret conversation only in its Messenger app for Android/iOS devices. That’s to say, you can’t have a secret conversation from Facebook desktop app or The secret conversation feature is enabled on your Messenger app by default. 

To start a secret conversation on Android: 

  1. Tap Send Messages Icon and choose a contact that you would like to have secret conversation with;

  2. On the messaging window, tap your contact’s information to get more detail;

  3. Tap Go to Secret Conversation;

  4. You are now in secret conversation mode with everything become black.

Start Secret Conversation

To change a conversation to a secret one on Android: 

  1. On the Messages section, choose the conversation that you want to encrypt;

  2. Tap Info Icon > Go to Secret Conversation;

  3. From now on, the messages that you send and receive with the contact are encrypted.

Change to Secret Conversation Mode

If you want to disable or enable secret conversation, please:

  1. Tap your profile photos;

  2. Choose Secret Conversation;

  3. Toggle on/off Secret Conversation. 

Enable Secret Conversation

How to Verify If Your Facebook Messages are Encrypted

If you like, you can even verify if your messages are encrypted. 

  1. Tap Info Icon and you will see two keys: your key and the receiver’s key.

  2. Compare the device keys that appear on your device with those on your contact’s device.

  3. If the keys match, the conversation is encrypted. In other words, those chats are encrypted messaages.

Verify Facebook Encryption

Pease notice that your key is specific to your Android device, not your Facebook account. If you log in your account in other device, the key will be different. Also, secret conversations won't sync over your devices. You can only view the secret conversations on the device that you start the conversations.

In a Secret Conversation, What Can You Send?

Having a secret conversation on Messenger is certainly safer, however, it comes with downsides: you can’t send GIFs, voice, voice calling, payment, group messages in a secret conversation. 

What you can send in a secret conversation includes: 

  • Messages/Disappearing messages

  • Pictures/Stickers/Videos

Yes, you can send Snapchat-like messages that disappear at a set time after they are seen in Facebook Messenger. To send disappearing Facebook messages on Android: 

  1. Open a secret conversation;

  2. Tap Disappearing message;

  3. Set when you want the message to disappear, for example, in a hour after it has been seen.

  4. When it is time, the message will disappear from both your device and the other device.

Send Disappearing Facebook Messages

How to Delete Secret Conversations on Messenger

You can delete a secret conversation individually. Or you can delete all secret conversation at once

  1. Tap your profile picture in the top right corner;

  2. Choose Secret Conversations;

  3. Tap Delete Secret Conversations;

  4. Tap Delete All.

Delete Secret Conversations

Note:  After removing secret conversations from your device, the sent or received secret messages still remain in someone else's devices if they don’t delete them. 

That’s how to have secret conversations on Facebook Messenger. If you have more questions about secret conversation on Messenger, let us know by leaving your comment.

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