For all you Wi-Fi borrowers....

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by Koodauw, Mar 25, 2006.

  1. Koodauw macrumors 68040

    Koodauw

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    Madison
    #1
    Link.

    $250, that should really deter someone. However it doesn't look like simply sharing an internet connection is a prosecutable offense.
     
  2. Benjamindaines macrumors 68030

    Benjamindaines

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    #2
    Was he charged for being on the wireless network of accessing someone's actual computer?
     
  3. ITASOR macrumors 601

    ITASOR

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    Oneida, NY
    #3
    He was charged with accessing someone's computer. Just using their wifi...he probably would have had a lower fine if caught.

    Oh, and, just for a little lesson. When you're wardriving, always use the ones named "linksys". What's the chances that someone who doesn't know how to change their ssid will know you're borrowing their wifi? :D :cool: :eek:
     
  4. devilot Moderator emeritus

    devilot

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    #4
    From the linked article:
    I take that to mean he actually went into another person's computers/files, etc.
     
  5. grapes911 Moderator emeritus

    grapes911

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    #5
    Maybe. But a router has a processor and memory. For all intents and purposes, it is a computer system even if it is underpowered powered. Anytime you connect to the internet through that router, you are accessing someone else's computer. Where does the law draw the line? I really don't know.
     
  6. RamSlack macrumors member

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    NW Washington
    #6
    Not neccesarily. In the law enforcement realm, "computer System" includes all peripherials attached to the computer case ie: monitor, keyboard, cable modem, wireless router, etc.. If it's attached, it's part of the "computer system. With this in mind, accessing someone's wireless router would constitute accessing someone's computer system.
     
  7. devilot Moderator emeritus

    devilot

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    #7
    Hm. Interesting... glad I don't 'borrow' anybody's internet that I don't have permission for.
     
  8. OutThere macrumors 603

    OutThere

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    NYC
    #8
    linksys is a good choice, as is 'NETGEAR'.

    Unfortunately 2wire access points have grown in popularity...they have WEP on by default. :( :p
     
  9. yoak macrumors 65816

    yoak

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    Location:
    Oslo, Norway
    #9
    It´s an offence here in Norway to. I used to surf on my neighbours for a few months before I had my conection up and running. I never used it for heavy stuff though. I don´t think it´s too bad surf on others lines if you don´t download a lot of stuff.

    On a side note, when we put our bay call on (it does have a camera) it knocks out my wireless connection. It´s not too bad as I can use a cable (or do something else), but I wonder if the same thing happens to my poor neighbours as well. Sure hope not
     
  10. MacNut macrumors Core

    MacNut

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    #10
    If your stupid enough to leave your network open then you have to take some of the blame too. Don't give all the blame to the guy who happened to stumble across an open network.
     
  11. miniConvert macrumors 68040

    miniConvert

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    #11
    Sure, the owner of the wireless access point needs to take some responsibility, but the guy who 'stumbled' on the 'open' network is to blame. If I leave my keys in the ignition it doesn't give someone else the right to take my car for a ride.

    If only access points had all always shipped with encryption enabled by default. Then it could then be argued that anyone connecting to an unencrypted network was entitled to do so. However, that's not the case, and it's hardly an uneducated persons fault if the hardware they buy opens up their network to the whole damn world.

    If anyone needs to share the blame, it's the manufacturers who are stupid enough to sell products that are 'vulnerable'.
     
  12. MacNut macrumors Core

    MacNut

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    #12
    But also if you leave the keys in the ignition it will be your own fault that the car was taken in the first place. Lock the car and you have no excuse for why your car is gone. There is a reason locks were invented, Its because not everyone can be trusted.
     
  13. Caitlyn macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 30, 2005
    #13
    I agree with MacNut. They kind of deserve it if they left their network open and unprotected. But yeah, $250 will definitely deter people. Or at least I think it will. There will always be those people who think they "won't get caught".
     
  14. miniConvert macrumors 68040

    miniConvert

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    #14
    Yes but it doesn't make the person who takes your car any less wrong, does it? They still took something which didn't belong to them. Just because it's easy doesn't mean it's right.
     
  15. MacNut macrumors Core

    MacNut

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    CT
    #15
    Lets say someone gets on to my wireless network and uses my bandwidth for illegal purposes, who will my provider go after the guy in the street or me for supplying the network.
     
  16. grapes911 Moderator emeritus

    grapes911

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    #16
    As my dad says, "Locks are for honest people. A crook will still steal something no matter how many locks you put on it."

    Forget the car analogy. If I leave my back door open, and a thief takes my TV, how much blame can you actually put on me? Yes, I should have locked it, but the thief first checked to see if my door was unlocked, then entered my house, then looked for something to take, then took it. I'm sure the law won't hold me responsible as an accessory to the crime.
     
  17. dornoforpyros macrumors 68040

    dornoforpyros

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    #17
    hmm average monthly price for a DSL connection
    roughly $40

    250 / 40 = 6.25

    So assuming you get away with it for more than 6 months you've still saved money. :p

    very similar to the c-train in calgary, the fine for riding without a ticket is the equivalent of 3 months of bus passes.

    Numbers like this just make it worth risking it really.
     
  18. Bosunsfate macrumors 6502

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    Jan 20, 2006
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    Silicon Valley, CA
    #18
    What is being stolen?

    I think there is a whole legal issue that has yet to be resolved, as this is really new territory.

    The two basic aspects are either theft and or trespassing.

    Lets take theft. It is defined as taking someone's "property" without the intention of returning it. What property is being taken? Since nearly all ISP charges are flat rates, they are not paying more.....so is it bandwidth?:rolleyes:

    Then there is trespassing, which is defined as to enter an owners land or property without permission. Now let me pose this question.

    In most places a person cannot be convicted of trespassing if the owner has not posted proper signage, or fenced off their property. Could you not make the same assumption then, that a person who does not offer password protection on their network? Isn't that saying they do not have a probelm with someone piggy backing on their network? I'd say so.

    For me, the clear distinction is when you add the security level. That's like putting up the sign "No Trespassing". Without it I think there is a good reason to say I'm doing nothing illegal when I use my neighbors network when mine's down. They don't have passwords and I'm not "taking" anything from them.

    Frankly the risk is on my end. They can more easily give me viruses. And they certainly could sniff what I'm doing. So I had better make sure I'm not doing anything that has personal or private information going over net.
     
  19. Bosunsfate macrumors 6502

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    #19
    I think if you look at similar situations with people having their computers taken over and used for denial of service attacks, the answer is not you.
     
  20. TrumanApple macrumors member

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    Jan 2, 2005
    #20
    When you pay for DSL or cable internet or any other type, you get a certain upstream and downstream speed. If someone is using some of my bandwidth, then I am getting slower internet then what I paid for.
     
  21. Bosunsfate macrumors 6502

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    #21
    True but only if the usage is happening at the same time. My main point is that it is not a clear cut issue like many other things. This is really new territory and what the end result will be....well a $250 fine isn't much of anything......
     
  22. RamSlack macrumors member

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    Mar 4, 2006
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    NW Washington
    #22
    As far as the crime, you could either go for "Computer Trespass" which is basically gaining unauthorized access into ones computer system, or "theft of services" for those that hop onto wireless accounts belonging to hotels and such that are open for their paid guests only.

    The mentality of doing it "just because you can" or placing the blame on those that are not computer literate enough to implement the security measures themselves just isn't right. In my opinion, it's just plain unethical.

    Just because you can doesn't mean you should. On a side note, "Wardriving" is not illegal" since access is not actually gained.

    A few worst case scenarios:
    1) Unauthorized person uses your wireless access to send a threatening message to the prez. Who's door do you think the secret service is going to be knocking on the next morning.
    2) Unauthorized person uses your wireless access to upload and trade child porn. Who's computer is going to get seized and who's going to have to convince the cops that YOU weren't the person who did it.

    The above two scenarios will most likely get sorted out after several months but that would rely heavily on the competency of the investigating officer.

    Just my two cents
     
  23. findpankaj macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2005
    #23
    I kinda agree to this. sometimes, wireless devices on the computer automatically connect to somebody else's network. I don't know how this happens but if you accept to connect in-secured network even once, then these devices just automatically connect to other networks and go unnoticed.

    Yes, if the person is connected to a computer and doing all sorts of things with it, then he is due for a punishment. otherwise, a warning should be enough (to both).
     
  24. Bosunsfate macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2006
    Location:
    Silicon Valley, CA
    #24
    This is espeically true for the "linksys" network names. Essentianly those network names that are defualt out of the box.

    I had this situation happen on my work PC where I connected to an unsecure "linksys" network. It took me awhile to figure out to disable the automatic connection for that network name. Until then my PC would connect to any network with that name. To say the least this was a concern and I'm glad I figured it out enventually. I'm sure plenty of people haven't.

    So, this is what I'm also writting about above. It is possible for "innocent" people to get on an unsecure network unkowningly. Intent is key....
     
  25. DeeJay Dan macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2006
    Location:
    New York
    #25
    Open network? Let her rip..

    I'm a PC user so far and am the local "computer guy" people are forever asking me for advice. I always tell people you don't take a computer out of the box, plug it in to your modem and surf. You have to be cautious install a free firewall, anti-virus excetra.

    Same goes for a wireless router. Take the time to read through the little pamphlet that comes with it and tell you all about security risks. Don't plug it in and think wow I can download porn while I'm watching football. :D

    It isn't right use someone else's network without their permission. Have I done it? Yes. Would I do it again? Yes.

    Leaving the keys in the ignition and leaving you house doors unlocks it's pretty idiotic you're almost inviting trouble. Here in NY if you leave your keys in the ignition and someone "steals" your car it isn't grand theft auto it's called unauthorized use and is a low misdemeanor.

    Ignorance is no excuse you remember to set your car alarm and lock 1 sometimes 2 locks when you leave your house. The same should apply to your 'net connection.

    A related story. I was driving along in my car using my laptop as an MP3 player, I had stopped at a light and was connected to a network. So, I pulled over and looked at where it was coming from. It was coming from the Sherrif's department on the corner. I was connected to it automatically because it wasn't password protected. If they leave a network wide open like that, I could imagine what they're internal network security must be, I probably could've wreaked all kinds of havoc on their network, had I been inclined.
     

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