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Facebook Inc. is planning to introduce a feature letting users of its Messenger app retract messages after a report that Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s Chief Executive Officer, used an early version of the feature without telling anyone.

Techcrunch reported late Thursday that multiple people saw Messenger missives from Zuckerberg disappear. Facebook said the feature was developed after the Sony Corp. data hack in 2014, which exposed a trove of sensitive internal communications. So Facebook created a capability that let executives expunge their app messages after a period of time.

"We will now be making a broader delete message feature available. This may take some time," a Facebook spokeswoman wrote in an email on Friday. "Until this feature is ready, we will no longer be deleting any executives’ messages. We should have done this sooner – and we’re sorry that we did not."

Facebook is dealing with the worst privacy crisis in its history in the wake of the Cambridge Analytica data scandal. The company said earlier this week that it scans content in the Messenger app to track abuse. Zuckerberg is scheduled to testify before Congress on April 10 and 11.

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