The UK minister criticizes Facebook messages encryption plan

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The UK Security Minister Tom Tugendhat has put Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg on blast over rolling out end-to-end encryption (E2EE) to Facebook messages, BBC reports.

Facebook messages come with with end-to-end encryption to enhance their security and add an extra layer of protection against cyber criminals. While adding E2EE to Facebook messages might seem like a great act by the tech giant, the UK Security Minister has another opinion.

Tom Tugendhat said Facebook has become a “one-stop shop” for child abusers (via daily mail), and the platform allows predators to “operate with impunity,” The Security Minister also warned that Meta and Facebook are “turning a blind eye” to the growing number of child sexual abuse cases on the platform. He added that this is an “extraordinary moral choice” for Zuckerberg and his company.

The UK Security Minister warns about growing child abuse cases on Facebook

With end-to-end encryption, authorities can no longer access the messages transmitted between children and their contacts. This could pave the way for predators to exploit children when knowing that law enforcement can’t access their messages.


“It’s not acceptable for tech executives to make vast profits from their youngest users, only to pass the buck when it comes to protecting them from the dangers on their own platform create,” Tugendhat said.

The UK Security Minister also pointed to the launch of an advertising campaign that aims to increase parents’ awareness about Meta’a launch of E2EE to messages and what it means to their children’s safety.

According to Tugendhat, Meta previously helped UK authorities to catch David Wilson, who posed as a girl on Facebook and asked victims to send sexually explicit images. Wilson was captured after authorities could access his 250,000 Facebook messages.

In response, Meta said it would continue to roll out end-to-end encryption while stays committed to work closely with law enforcement and child safety experts. The plan was already delayed due to technical issues.


“We don’t think people want us reading their private messages, so we have developed safety measures that prevent, detect, and allow us to take action against this heinous abuse while maintaining online privacy and security.” Meta spokesperson added.

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