2023, July 21
·
Security
·
8 min read
·
Matt S.

How to Deactivate Facebook Messenger? Quick Guide

Deactivating or deleting a Facebook account takes a few easy steps that will enable you to get a safer communication alternative alongside other reasons.

If you do not trust Facebook, you're not alone. Business Insider reports that around 81 % of users have little or no confidence that Facebook will protect their data and privacy. Facebook Messenger is a messaging app developed by Meta Platforms and has over 3 billion MAU (monthly active users) worldwide. But as you can see from the trust statistics above, its popularity doesn't at all mean that it's a trustworthy app.
There have been numerous cases of data misuse, leaks, and security issues with regard to Facebook's user data (Here's an example). Hence, we understand that a lot of people might be wondering how to deactivate or delete your Facebook Messenger profile. In this blog, we'll try to cover it in-depth. We will provide you with:
  • A step-by-step guide for deactivating your Facebook Messenger profile.
  • A step-by-step guide for deleting your Facebook Messenger profile.
  • Advice on safer alternatives for online communication.
  • Any relevant info that may be useful.

First – why should you consider deactivating or deleting your Facebook Messenger account?

As we've mentioned, Facebook (now Meta) has a bad track record when it comes to user safety and privacy. It has been involved in numerous high-profile scandals of misusing user data and having millions of records leaked, to name a few. Even now, with the launch of Threads, the new Meta app, you can see that Meta depends on gathering a lot of data about you in order to use it for advertising purposes.
The image shows what data about its users Meta can collect via Threads.
The situation is much worse with Facebook Messenger.
This illustration from Forbes just shows the sheer scale of data collection. One might call it overkill or unnecessary. You might notice that Apple's iMessage gathers only a fraction of what Facebook Messenger does. That makes it a good alternative, right? Well, both apps aren't considered very secure or private by cybersecurity experts. Still, in terms of personal data security, Facebook Messenger may be the very worst choice.

Differences Between Deactivating and Deleting a Facebook Messenger Account

Facebook (Meta) would much prefer if you chose to deactivate, not delete, your Facebook account. These are two completely different actions that provide different outcomes and results.

Account deactivation - overview

Deactivation is a much milder and less drastic process. If you deactivate your account
  • You can reactivate it and regain access anytime
  • People will still be able to see what messages you have exchanged
  • You will not be able to access various Oculus or other relevant products with the account
In short, deactivation is labeled as a temporary action by Facebook's FAQ page, but you can deactivate it indefinitely.

Account deletion - overview

If you're really not looking to get back to Facebook Messenger, then you should think about deleting your account. Here's what you should know about it:
  • Deletion is not done with immediate effect. It takes a few days for the process to go through. If you log in to your account during that period, the deletion request gets canceled.
  • After the deletion is completed, you cannot regain access to your account.
  • Some information will be stored in Meta's servers.
  • Messaging history will be available to friends and contacts, only won't show your profile info on the app's interface.
  • Log records can remain in Meta's databases but should be disassociated from personal identification factors.
  • Your Oculus services, achievements, and information will also be deleted.
You can read more about the differences between deactivation and deletion on Facebook's very own help centre (Click here).

Step-by-step Guide on Deactivating Your Facebook Messenger Account

There are a lot of topics and items to cover when it comes to the topic of how to deactivate Facebook Messenger accounts.
First, let's mention DEMA or Deactivated Except Messenger Account. Facebook (the social media platform) is linked with, but not entirely linked with, Facebook Messenger. This allows you to use the Messenger app without a Facebook account. You can do that by creating a DEMA account. Alternatively, you can deactivate your Facebook profile but keep using Facebook Messenger with the same credentials. Read more about DEMA here.

Steps to Deactivate Your Facebook Messenger Account

The process is the same for both iOS and Android devices.
  • You need to open the Facebook Messenger app on your device.
  • Find the hamburger icon (=). Click on it.
  • Now press the gear icon.
  • Find Accounts Center -> Personal Details.
  • Now click Account Ownership and Control.
  • Tap on Deactivation or Deletion -> Continue to Facebook Account Deactivation and Deletion.
  • Press Continue to Account Deactivation.
  • For the final time, enter your password and tap Continue to end the process.
Here's a screenshot illustrating one of the key steps in the process.

Step-by-step Guide on Deleting Your Facebook Messenger Account

When you want to delete a Facebook Messenger account, there are quite a few tricky parts to the process. For example, if you do have a Facebook profile (account), you'll need to delete that separately. So, since the topic of this article is focused on Facebook Messenger, let's look at how account deletion works on that platform.

Steps to Delete Your Facebook Messenger Account

Here's how you do that on iPhone, iPad, or Android devices.
  • Open the Chats section of the application.
  • Locate your profile picture in the top left and tap on it.
  • Tap on Account Settings.
  • In the next window, find the option saying Delete Your Account and Information. You might need to scroll a bit down for that.
  • The app will ask you to enter your password. Do it.
  • Now tap Submit.
That's pretty much it! Just don't forget that your Facebook account will still remain intact and will need separate deletion. The exact details are provided on Facebook's Help Section, but here's a link for easier navigation (Click here).

What's Better for Me – to Deactivate or Delete My Facebook Messenger Account?

Facebook has a lot of your personal data at its disposal. This isn't something that any user desires. It can be compared to a powder keg, just waiting for a match to cause an explosion. Also, you could worry that it might be used as a guinea pig for advertising tests and other Meta's business decisions. Thus, knowing about deletion and deactivation gives you more control over your personal digital footprint (Read more).
Deactivation and deletion can offer specific pros and cons, but it can still be difficult to determine which is better for you. The choice ultimately depends on your individual circumstances. However, with so many safer alternatives for communication online, there are plenty of reasons to test the waters and see how other apps can benefit your digital communications.
In order to know whether delete or deactivate, you should focus on your desired level of detachment and future intentions with the platform. Deactivation provides flexibility and a temporary escape, with the doors opened for return. On the other hand, if you delete your account, you can't recover it, and everything on there may be lost.
Consider your privacy concerns, desire for a break, and long-term plans before making a choice. Remember, it's crucial to prioritize your well-being and personal preferences in this digital age.

A Better Alternative to Facebook Messenger – Skyda

For a while now, every cybersecurity expert, along with more and more users, has been praising the emergence of end-to-end encryption. With the rise of cyber threats and numerous examples of Facebook users' data leaking, end-to-end encryption came to the spotlight as a great solution that reduces the risks of exposure and personal data leaks.
End-to-end encryption is very effective because, at its core, it executes a very simple principle. Imagine that you want to send a message and protect its contents. How can you do that? Well, probably the best way is to figure out a code that no one else could be able to decipher and read. Yet, instead of a common code, the messages are encrypted with complex algorithms that require a pair of keys, unique to the users that are chatting, to decipher those messages. This means that the server or man in the middle can only see gibberish and code, whilst e2e messenger app users can see normal content.
This illustration simply shows how E2E works.
Skyda is an app that's available for Android and iOS. It offers amazing functionality for a private messenger.
  • E2E encrypted instant messaging.
  • High-quality & private calls using WebRTC.
  • Secret chats with randomly generated names to ensure total anonymity.
  • Peer-to-peer file transfer with unlimited file sizes.
  • Zero data is stored on Skyda servers (unlike with Facebook Messenger).

Conclusion

So, hopefully, you will now know how to delete a Facebook account as well as how to deactivate one. It's not that difficult. As you can see, there are plenty of reasons to do that and to look for a safer communications alternative online. Skyda might be your best bet – give it a try!
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