I have just setup jitsi 2.4.4997 for my parents, we are migrating away from Skype!!
I wanted to setup secure chat as well !!
First, I found it weird, that all the secure chat options are NOT activated by default!!!
Enable private messaging
Automatically initiate private messaging with all contacts (and with the current contact!)
Require private messaging
So, I went ahead and activated them all! And what was my surprise, that on the next
after quitting Jitsi and starting it again, despite the fact, that those options are active,
the lock icon shows open and I have to click it, in order to start a private conversation!!