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Intel Corp. bowed today to concerns by privacy groups upset over new technology that allows consumers to be identified as they move across the Internet.

The company promised it will offer free software to allow customers to easily turn off the feature permanently on its upcoming line of Pentium III computer chips.

Intel also said it will turn off the feature by default for Pentium III chips that haven't already been distributed.

Intel, the world's largest chip maker, announced last week that its new Pentium III chip will by default transmit its unique serial number across the Internet to help verify the identity of users.

The feature would have been a boon for electronic commerce, allowing companies and shoppers to feel more secure in the transmission of sensitive data, but privacy groups howled in protest and vowed to boycott Intel products

$305 million going to states to help crime victims rebuild lives

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Justice Department will distribute more than $305 million to state programs that help crime victims rebuild their lives, Vice President Gore was to announce today in California.

The money will cover such crime-related expenses as medical treatment, counseling, funeral costs and lost wages.

Funds will go to nearly 3,000 service agencies to help crime victims through crisis intervention, criminal-justice advocacy, counseling and emergency shelter.

Gore also announced Sunday in San Diego a $128 million program to help youngsters learn to read.

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