Twitter is rolling out support for encrypted direct messages (DMs) on the platform, more than six months after its chief executive Elon Musk confirmed plans for the feature in November 2022. The "Phase 1" of the initiative will appear as separate conversations alongside existing direct messages on users' inboxes. Encrypted chats carry a lock icon badge to visually differentiate them. That said, the opt-in feature is currently limited to verified users or affiliates to a verified organization. It's also essential both the sender and recipient are on the latest versions of the Twitter apps across Android, iOS, and desktop web. Another criteria to send and receive encrypted messages is that the recipient must follow the sender, has sent a message to the sender in the past, or has accepted a direct message request from the sender at some point. While Twitter did not disclose the exact method it uses to secure the conversations, the company said it employs a "combination of strong cryptographic schemes" to encrypt users' messages, links, and reactions. It further emphasized that the encrypted chat contents remain encrypted while stored on its infrastructure and only decrypted at the receiver's end. The implementation is expected to be open sourced later this year. This is big news for Twitter users who are concerned about privacy, as the feature will make it much more difficult for anyone to snoop on conversations. It's also a good move for the platform in terms of security, as encrypted messaging has become increasingly popular in recent years. The fact that Twitter is open-sourcing the implementation is also noteworthy, as it will allow other developers to audit the code and help make it as secure as possible.
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