Demand Progress

Encrypt our private messages!

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    Encrypt our private messages!

    Petition to the FTC:
    We urge you to
    create comprehensive privacy rules to reform the current practices of online data collection, usage, and sharing — all of which constitute unfair trade practices. The FTC should also specifically require websites to use end-to-end encryption for all DMs and all of our personally-identifiable information that they handle!

    Elon Musk has been trumpeting “free speech” since he took the reins at Twitter — yet his biggest partner in the company is the violently repressive Saudi royal family, who killed dissident and Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi in 2018.1 Privacy and security on Twitter are more important than ever. 

    Right now, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is asking for public comments on the privacy laws that corporations are currently abusing to share our personal data. But there are only 6 days left to make our voices heard. We need to tell the FTC to force corporations to encrypt our DMs to protect us from hackers, corporate abuse, and government repression!

    Sign the petition: The FTC must require corporations to encrypt our DMs and all of our data that they handle!

    Twitter’s failure to encrypt our personal data has already led to major national security breaches — like when a former Twitter employee spied on Saudi dissidents’ Twitter accounts and passed their personal information along to Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.2 A spy was able to sell out critics of the Saudi monarchy precisely because of Twitter’s poor privacy protections for users.

    Now that the Saudi government has secured a major share in Twitter, the risk of surveillance and espionage is even greater—and it doesn’t help that Elon Musk’s inability to competently manage Twitter is eviscerating the company.3

    That’s why the FTC must take advantage of this opportunity to adopt comprehensive privacy rules that will govern online data collection, usage, and sharing. Our freedom of speech is in danger because Twitter and other corporations fail to encrypt our DMs and protect users’ privacy. It’s time for the FTC to make this failure to encrypt illegal.  

    Sign the petition: The FTC must require corporations to encrypt our DMs and protect users’ privacy!


    1. Mother Jones, “Elon Musk, Free Speech Absolutist, Is Silent About His Saudi Partners,” October 30, 2022.
    2. The Guardian, “Ex-Twitter employee found guilty of spying on Saudi dissidents,” August 9, 2022.
    3. WIRED, “Twitter’s SMS Two-Factor Authentication Is Melting Down,” November 14, 2022.