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WhatsApp ad inadvertently makes case against Facebook Messenger

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Even WhatsApp thinks Facebook Messenger is creepy.

That’s one takeaway from a new advertisement from the Facebook-owned (aka Meta) messaging app. In the short Jan. 28 spot, dubbed “Doubt Delivered,” a mail carrier delivers opened mail and argues that not using end-to-end encryption is akin to letting strangers read your mail.

“Everyday over 5.5. billion messages are sent without the protection of end-to-end encryption,” reads the ad’s caption. “Messages are exposed as these deliveries.”

While explicitly taking aim at SMS text messages, what’s left unsaid is that Messenger doesn’t end-to-end encrypt messages by default. And, according to Facebook’s Head of Global Safety Antigone Davis, Messenger likely won’t until 2023.

Instead, users must opt-in to the confusingly named “secret conversations.”

The short WhatsApp ad convincingly makes the case that end-to-end encryption is a basic requirement for privacy, and users should settle for nothing less. Too bad its corporate sibling didn’t get the message.

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