US Government wants access to messages on Facebook

The US Department of Justice is asking Facebook to delay its plans to implement end-to-end encryption across all its messaging services because they don’t think its good and safe for communities.

Facebook had announced in March that it was planning on enhancing privacy on all its social media platforms. The company wants to put end-to-end encryption on all its messaging platform, in its Messenger, WhatsApp, and Instagram.

Attorney General William Barr is saying that the Department Of Justice (DOJ)  is concerned that Facebook’s encryption would be harmful to the investigation and prosecution of offenders of crimes like terrorism, extortion, and the sexual exploitation of children.

The New York Times made a report on Wednesday that the number of reports of child sexual abuse material on Messenger reached nearly 12 million in 2018.

Barr says that the DOJ acknowledges the importance of strong encryption for services like banking, commerce and the protection of users’ privacy, but reiterates that security improvements to the virtual world “should not make us more vulnerable in the physical world”.

“We must find a way to balance the need to secure data with public safety and the need for law enforcement to access the information they need to safeguard the public, investigate crimes and prevent future criminal activity,” Barr states.

The DOJ is asking Facebook to allow law enforcement agencies to access the required content in a lawful manner.