With Facebook, Google, WhatsApp and Signal all offering various forms of encrypted messaging, Twitter has often seemed like the lone holdout. The company has been pressed to add an encryption option to its direct messaging - most notably by Edward Snowden - but the feature has yet to be introduced.
Photo: Justin Sullivan (Getty Images)
However, it looks as though Twitter is finally going to offer encrypted messaging. According to TechCrunch, the feature is visible in the latest Android application package, or APK, which suggests that it will be launching soon.
Twitter's encrypted messaging feature, first spotted by Jane Manchun Wong, still looks a little rough - there's a tab with filler text that reads "Education on what an encrypted conversation is" - but a lot of it looks pretty standard. There's an option to start a new encrypted conversation, as well as one to verify the encryption keys of the participants in the conversation.
Twitter is working on End-to-End Encrypted Secret DM! pic.twitter.com/2lLr5i1p42
— Jane Manchun Wong (@wongmjane) May 4, 2018
In the past, Twitter has mulled the idea of introducing encrypted messaging, but it reportedly delayed doing so because of marketing concerns. In December 2016, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey said that encrypted messaging was "something we'll think about", but he didn't commit to offering that feature to Twitter users.
It isn't clear when Twitter might officially launch the "secret conversations" feature. A spokesperson for the company declined to comment.