Facebook has added options for people to add their PGP keys to their profiles, and will also send emails to people using the super private technology, meaning that governments and police won’t be able to read messages even if they try.
PGP stands for Pretty Good Privacy and allows people to easily encrypt messages so that they can only be read by the people they’re being sent to. By adding the option to include the program’s addresses in their profiles, Facebook could rapidly increase adoption just as concern about governmental invasions of privacy rise.
Messages sent over Facebook will continue to use the same encryption methods as before. But by adding PGP keys to profiles, Facebook is encouraging people to look instead to talk using the program, which encrypts and then decrypts messages so that only those sending and receiving them can use them.
It will also ensure that nobody else can read the notification emails that Facebook sends out when something happens on the site. If users put their PGP keys on their profile, Facebook will be able to send the messages with end-to-end encryption, meaning that nobody else can open them.
PGP is a program used by journalists, activists and others who don’t want their messages to be read. It works by using two keys — a public one, that serves as an address, and a private one that works like a password.
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