Learn how you can get the iPhone 13 now!
glindauer's profile

Tutor

 • 

8 Messages

Tue, Sep 18, 2018 8:56 PM

Does AT&T Yahoo spy on email content like Yahoo mail does?

Yahoo has a history of scanning user's email content to sell information to advertise. Even Google no longer does this, but as of late August (a few weeks ago), Yahoo is still doing it. In fact, the Wall Street Journal (fourth citation below) says Yahoo is the only major company *still* spying on user emails.

 

The top citation gives instructions on how to opt out-- but the interface has already changed some, it required me to allow cookies from Yahoo/Oath on my computer, and it didn't work!

 

This is documented in:
9/04/2018: http://jessejones.com/story/how-to-keep-your-information-safe-if-you-use-yahoo-mail/
8/30/2018: https://www.digitaltrends.com/web/yahoo-mail-spying-sell-ads/
https://www.digitaltrends.com/computing/how-yahoo-is-mining-for-gold-in-your-junk-mail/
8/28/2018: https://www.wsj.com/articles/yahoo-bucking-industry-scans-emails-for-data-to-sell-advertisers-1535466959
4/08/2018: https://blog.l4networks.com/2018/04/20/yahoo-mail-the-oath-to-spy-and-track-you/

 

[This is my THIRD attempt to post this email-- not sure if the forum is unhappy with the links, the tags, or something else]

_xyzzy_

Expert

 • 

15K Messages

3 y ago

Yahoo is att's email service provider and therefore under OATH's terms of service.

 

And do you really believe free email services like gmail, hotmail/outlook, indeed most free email service providers don't mine user mail or show ads?  They are not running those services out of the kindness of their hearts.  I keep repeating "if you are not paying for it, you become the product".

Tutor

 • 

8 Messages

3 y ago

I appreciate that there is an attempt to reply to my  concern, but I feel like I'm not being heard, so let me respond and try again:

 

"... free email services..."

1) I am PAYING AT&T for their product, not expecting them to have their contractor pay for the email service they provide by reading my emails and selling their content. I am not paying bargain basement prices, nor is the image AT&T is trying to foster that they are selling me a cheaper product by cutting out some frills (for instance, by saying that the "privacy" option would cost them extra).

 

"... do you really believe free email services like gmail, hotmail/outlook, indeed most free email service providers don't mine user mail..."

2) Yes, I do really believe this. More than one of the URL links I provided, including the WSJ citation, clearly state that Yahoo is the only email service that is known to currently mine user emails, and that gmail does not (any more-- they used to). They also note that Yahoo admits to reading our email content. It's possible that email providers do-- but it looks like most security experts don't think the others you listed do this. As an example, the top "Jesse Jones" URL link (that I provided at first) recommends switching from YAHOO to gmail, hotmail/outlook, or another to avoid data mining from YAHOO.

 

"Yahoo is att's service provider and therefore under OATH's of service"

3) I'm betting this is true, too-- but can anyone point out where AT&T states this in writing? AT&T has enough clout, and brings enough customers (who do have to look at YAHOO's ADs) that it could have contracted that YAHOO carve out a spying exception on their customers. It still has enough clout that it could theoretically shame them into coming in line with gmail, outlook/hotmail, etc, though AT&T is probably in so deep now that it's not economically feasible to back up a threat by actually switching from YAHOO. (It would be costly for me to drop my @att.net emails as well.)

Need help?
New to the AT&T Community? Start by visiting the Community How-To.
New to the AT&T Community?
Visit the Community How-To.