Use end-to-end encryption in Messages

When you message someone who also has chat features enabled in Messages, your chat conversations automatically upgrade to end-to-end encryption. With end-to-end encryption, no one can read the content sent between you and the other person.  

Check if a conversation is end-to-end encrypted 

End-to-end encrypted conversations have:

  • A banner that says “ Chatting with [contact name or phone number].”
  • A lock  next to message timestamps.
  • A lock  on the send button when you compose a message.

If messages don’t have locks, make sure you and the person you message both have:

Confirm your verification code

Your conversation is end-to-end encrypted with a secret key that only you and your contact can access. You can verify end-to-end encryption by asking your contact if they have the same code. 

  1. Open the Messages app .
  2. Open a conversation or create a new message.
  3. In the top right of the conversation window, tap More options More and then Details and then Verify encryption.  

Tips:

  • You can call your contact and read your verification code aloud to make sure your codes match.
  • It's optional to confirm a verification code. Messages will be end-to-end encrypted even if you don’t take this step. 

Troubleshoot messages you’re unable to receive or decrypt

Important:

  • End-to-end encryption may not work on certain Android Go phones.
  • End-to-end encrypted messages only work when you communicate with another Messages user. If you or your contact change messaging apps or operating software, Messages may not immediately detect when a conversation is no longer eligible for end-to-end encryption. Initially, some messages may not appear or they may be delivered in an unreadable, encrypted format.

If you get an unreadable, encrypted message:

If you changed messaging apps and aren't receiving messages, you may need to turn chat features off.

Tip: You can send messages as chats or resend them as SMS/MMS.  

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