Two search engines and sellers of web mail, Yahoo and Google are going to team up to create a secure email system by next year that could make it nearly impossible for hackers or government officials to read users' messages.
Both outfits have been beefing up their defences against government intrusion and hacking following the public disclosure of the National Security Agency's mass surveillance programmes. Already Google, Microsoft and Facebook are encrypting internal traffic and have smaller adjustments that together make sweeping collection more difficult.
Yahoo has altered its email process so users adopting encryption type messages in a separate window. Google said it was encouraging website developers to make their sites secure for visitors by using site encryption as one of the factors to determine search ranking.