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Report Says Yahoo Scanned Emails


A news agency story says Yahoo provided the U.S. government with a tool that could scan incoming emails.

A news agency story says Yahoo provided the U.S. government with a tool that could scan incoming emails.

This is What’s Trending Today...

It has not been a good month for the American Internet company Yahoo.

In late September, Yahoo announced that everyone who uses its email service should change his or her password. The company said up to 500 million email accounts had been hacked.

This week, the news agency Reuters reported that the company built an app that could scan emails. It said Yahoo gave the app to a United States intelligence agency.

People are reacting to the latest news on Facebook and Twitter.

One Facebook user said: “If you were using Yahoo for anything, just stop. Now!”

Three former Yahoo employees told Reuters that the company had obeyed a demand from the U.S. government. They said it agreed to look at messages sent to hundreds of millions of email accounts.

Security experts say it is the first known time a U.S. Internet company agreed to view incoming messages instead of stored messages.

The sources said they do not know exactly what intelligence agents were searching for.

Other Internet companies including Apple, Google, Twitter and Facebook said they never received a similar request. They also said they would not agree to such a demand.

On Wednesday, Yahoo called the Reuters story “misleading.”

In a statement provided to journalists, the company said “the mail scanning described in the article does not exist on our systems.”

But many social media users continue to criticize Yahoo for its reported action.

That includes Edward Snowden, who wrote “They secretly scanned everything you ever wrote, far beyond what law requires. Close your account today.”

And that’s What’s Trending Today.

I’m Dorothy Gundy.

Dan Friedell wrote this story for Learning English. Caty Weaver was the editor.

What do you think of the newest Yahoo story? We want to know. Write to us in the Comments Section or on our Facebook page.

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Words in This Story

password – n. a secret series of numbers or letters that allows you to use a computer system

hack – v. to secretly get access to the files on a computer or network in order to get information, cause damage, etc.

scan – v. to look at (something) carefully usually in order to find someone or something

email account – n. the online space used to store and receive electronic messages

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