£500 fine for using someone's broadband...

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by Applespider, Jul 25, 2005.

  1. Applespider macrumors G4

    Applespider

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2004
    Location:
    looking through rose-tinted spectacles...
    #1
    and a 12 month conditional discharge... seems very harsh considering that he wasn't trying to monitor traffic or hack into their network.

    Of course, we don't know what he was downloading and how often it must have occurred to allow the police to catch him. But the article raises a useful point - how do you tell the difference between someone who hasn't secured it because they're happy to share and those who haven't because they don't know how?

    Link to article
     
  2. pulsewidth947 macrumors 65816

    pulsewidth947

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    squarefrog.co.uk
    #2
    While I agree war-driving is stealing, why oh why dont people protect their networks!

    Its easy to add WEP/WPA, then stop broadcast of SSID, then filter mac adresses. OK so WEP wont hold out someone intent on stealing your bandwidth, but if you've got some unprotected network near you then a driver wont bother with yours..

    If they cant protect it for some reason, then they must expect someone will steal their bandwidth. Its sad, but its bound to happen.

    I agree with Applespider, that is a harsh charge..
    Ask them if you can use their network. If they slap you, its a clear indication that they dont know how :D
     
  3. DeSnousa macrumors 68000

    DeSnousa

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    Brisbane, Australia
    #3
    Some people need to learn how to protect there networks. Within my rooms range is a network by the name of "netgear" (does the company ring a bell)with no wep :rolleyes: you can tell he went install and thats it.
     
  4. Peterkro macrumors 68020

    Peterkro

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    Communard de Londres
    #4
    Some of us deliberatly leave our networks open if someone wants to use it why not,near complete wireless coverage is a possibility if enough people do it.
     
  5. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

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    Adelaide, Australia
    #5
    Very interesting concept Peterkro.

    I don't think I'm nearly generous enough though. :(
     
  6. Mac_Freak macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2005
    #6
    When it comes to stop broadcasting SSID, my step-fathers Windows machine won't connect to my network if I stop broadcating SSID :( At least I still can WEP and MAc filter.
     
  7. Applespider thread starter macrumors G4

    Applespider

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    #7
    Mine is closed since my ISP introduced caps. They are generous enough for my usage but I'm not letting someone else download potentially massive files and use it up. With the activities of the BPI et al in going after filesharers, I'm also not prepared to be done for anyone's illegal downloading or dodgy interests.
     
  8. Hemingray macrumors 68030

    Hemingray

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    Ha ha haaa!
    #8
    Why not? Two reasons:

    1) Bandwidth. Do you want people leeching off your bandwidth while you're trying to download something or play an online game?

    2) Illegal Activity. They can use your network to do all sorts of illegal stuff. For example, someone downloads thousands of mp3's on your network and gets red-flagged by Big Brother. Guess whose IP address they'll trace it back to?

    Obviously the chances of this happening are very slim, but the potential is there.
     
  9. Lyle macrumors 68000

    Lyle

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2003
    Location:
    Madison, Alabama
    #9
    I think pulsewidth947 has the right answer: if you don't have explicit permission from the owner, you don't use it. Once when I was in college, I foolishly left my bike unsecured out in front of my building, for just a few minutes -- and it was stolen. Wardrivers are no more justified in using other peoples' unsecured wireless networks than that thief was in stealing my bike.
     
  10. Applespider thread starter macrumors G4

    Applespider

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    #10
    My suggestion is for those who are happy for others to use their wifi to put the word 'Public' or 'Welcome' or 'Free' in the SSID they're broadcasting so that people know they can use it.

    And nice people looking for a signal can avoid those generic Netgear etc. It appears the guy in the story had been hanging around regularly. I suspect the average person who can't change their SSID or switch on security probably wouldn't notice the occasional leecher.
     
  11. alex_ant macrumors 68020

    alex_ant

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    #11
    It may not be a question of ignorance but of inability. For example, I have a router that doesn't support WPA. It can do WEP but we all know how secure that is, plus I can't get it to work on my network anyway so I don't use it. Filtering MAC addresses and disabling SSID broadcast can only go so far, yet I've done all I can do, and I shouldn't have to risk going to jail because of some trenchcoat-wearing pervert parked across the street, if you know what I mean. Saying we should depend on "nice" wardrivers to not leech off our bandwidth because our SSID doesn't have "free" in it is like saying we should depend on nice burglars to not steal our jewelry because we have a sign on our door that says "Attn burglars - please don't break into this residence."

    Wardriving should be illegal, and the penalty should be appropriate. If you need internet access anywhere, get a cell phone. If you need it at home, subscribe to it. If you think the world should be a 100% free internet slashdot wireless utopia, then YOU spend $50 a month to share your roadrunner. Don't steal mine, you prick!
     
  12. Nickygoat macrumors 6502a

    Nickygoat

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    Dec 11, 2004
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    London
    #12
    if this goes through who's going to want to share their connection? For those too lazy to read the link, it says that a new offence could be created if people learn how to build bombs via the net. A remote possibilty I agree but who knows? And other questionable activities available on the net? I'll keep it private thanks.
     
  13. andiwm2003 macrumors 601

    andiwm2003

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2004
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #13
    most providers have you sign something that says you can't share your internet with others. opening it actively by using free or wellcome could mean trouble for you. how would you defend yourself if some pervert uses your ip adress and the police finds out that you encouraged him using it?

    sorry, there is no free internet access. somebody will pay......
     
  14. Applespider thread starter macrumors G4

    Applespider

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    looking through rose-tinted spectacles...
    #14
    I fully agree - hence saying earlier in the thread that mine is closed and secured. But since there are those who are happy to open their network, individuals or coffee shops etc, then it would be useful to know who was 'allowing' you to join rather than just hadn't secured. Given OS X's remarkably useful ability to just find and join open networks, it might come in useful if we're going to be fined £500 for inadvertently connecting. ;)
     

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