Yahoo Protects User Data From Online Snooping

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Morning Money Memo:

Yahoo is adding more layers of security in its effort to shield people's online lives from government spying and other snooping. The announcement to protect users' data comes in the wake of Edward Snowden's revelations about government surveillance of private citizens.

Yahoo, an ABC News partner, plans to set up a system that encrypts all information being transmitted from one Yahoo data center to another. The technology is designed to make the emails and other digital information flowing through data centers indecipherable to outsiders.

Search requests made from Yahoo's homepage are also now automatically encrypted, and the online company is promising to make it more difficult for unauthorized intruders to hack into other services, including video chats, within the next few months. Yahoo strengthened the security of its email in January.

"Whether or not our users understand it, I feel it's our responsibility to keep them safe," says Alex Stamos, Yahoo's recently hired chief information of security. "All traffic through Yahoo will be encrypted by default".

Yahoo and other online firms have been calling for more oversight of the government's surveillance of users after a fierce backlash over the extent of their involvement with the NSA.

African-Americans and Latinos are losing economic ground compared with whites, according to a new report on jobs and income.

The latest State of Black America report from the National Urban League says the underemployment rate for African-American workers is 20.5 percent, compared with 18.4 percent for Hispanics and 11.8 percent or whites.

The report also says African-Americans are twice as likely as whites to be unemployed.

Federal authorities are said to have opened a criminal investigation into Citigroup over a recent $400 million fraud involving its Mexican unit.

The investigation centers on "whether holes in the bank's internal controls contributed to the fraud in Mexico," The New York Times reported. The FBI is leading the investigation and will consider whether Citigroup ignored warning signs about possible money laundering.

Stocks rose for a fourth straight day. The S&P 500 closed at another record high Wednesday, up 5 points. The Dow gained 40. Stock futures rose this morning. Asian stocks had a solid advance overnight.

More evidence of stronger growth in the United States and stimulus moves in China are reasons for rising stocks. China's cabinet promised to do more to support companies, expand consumer demand and create jobs

Economic sanctions against Russia could be a wrecking ball for a Miley Cyrus gig. The Financial Times says the promoter of her sold-out concert in Helsinki, Finland, "risks falling foul" of U.S. sanctions. The stadium where Cyrus, Justin Timberlake and other stars are due to appear this year is reportedly owned by a holding company in Finland controlled by three Russians singled out for U.S. restrictions.

Richard Davies Business Correspondent ABC News Radio Twitter: daviesnow

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