Skip to comments.Hey Neighbor, Stop Piggybacking on My Wireless
Posted on 03/04/2006 11:44:18 PM PST by conservative in nyc
For a while, the wireless Internet connection Christine and Randy Brodeur installed last year seemed perfect. They were able to sit in their sunny Los Angeles backyard working on their laptop computers.
But they soon began noticing that their high-speed Internet access had become as slow as rush-hour traffic on the 405 freeway.
"I didn't know whether to blame it on the Santa Ana winds or what," recalled Mrs. Brodeur, the chief executive of Socket Media, a marketing and public relations agency.
The "what" turned out to be neighbors who had tapped into their system. The additional online traffic nearly choked out the Brodeurs, who pay a $40 monthly fee for their Internet service, slowing their access until it was practically unusable.
Piggybacking, the usually unauthorized tapping into someone else's wireless Internet connection, is no longer the exclusive domain of pilfering computer geeks or shady hackers cruising for unguarded networks. Ordinarily upstanding people are tapping in. As they do, new sets of Internet behaviors are creeping into America's popular culture.
"I don't think it's stealing," said Edwin Caroso, a 21-year-old student at Miami Dade College, echoing an often-heard sentiment.
"I always find people out there who aren't protecting their connection, so I just feel free to go ahead and use it," Mr. Caroso said. He added that he tapped into a stranger's network mainly for Web surfing, keeping up with e-mail, text chatting with friends in foreign countries and doing homework.
Many who piggyback say the practice does not feel like theft because it does not seem to take anything away from anyone. One occasional piggybacker recently compared it to "reading the newspaper over someone's shoulder."
(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...
Two words: WEP Key.
Sitting in my suburban living room I have access to four wireless networks that aren't mine. I can't believe the signals are so strong they cut across the wooded neighborhood and through the walls of my home...but they do.
~ Blue Jays ~
It's called a WEP KEY. It's real easy to put on your router and then no more free rides.
If you don't want to share, use WEP. If you leave it open, then assume it's going to be used.
I have four other networks I could piggyback off right now if I wanted to. (I don't though)
One word: USELESS
WEP is completely compromised. Only WPA will offer any protection. Also, turn off the SSID broadcast feature.
We were at a function recently and two people that had wireless turned on their computers and said they were definately getting a signal from someone else's service. They were trying to get their own. They said as they move through the neighborhood, they pick up diffent people's service.
As an employee of a cable company (that offers broadband and wireless services) it comes actoss to me as the same logic as people who steal cable "nobody told me I couldn't use it, it was already there, blah, blah" but, IMO, if anybody transports a signal through the air space in my property and doesn't secure it, I ought to have the right to access it. That goes for satellite television, radio signals and, alas, wireless frequencies. You invaded my property so why should I not avail myself of your signal?
I know the law says you can't but common sense says you should. If somebody leaves a crate of oranges on my doorstep, is it wrong of me to eat them? Same principle.
Now if the user protects the signal from being used/intercepted, it should not be fair game for hackers but people who just expose themselves to this sort of thing probably deserve the inconvenience of freeloaders.
FWIW, I have never taken signals unlawfully. My employer comps my cable and internet.
You are correct of course, but the problem in most cases is just causal leaching. If someone is actively trying to break into your network the casual leach is the least of your problems.
Wow. This sort of imbecility is what paases for "chief executive" these days? Or is she Socket's only employee?
Hey Neighbor, stop broadcasting your unprotected connection.
Excellent. The truly diligent will do all three: WPA, no-SSID broadcast, and MAC registration.
Hey Neighbor, Stop Piggybacking on My Wireless"
Hey idiot, set up some security
Im on my laptop right now in the kitchen, and i have the option of 4 different wireless connections right now! LOL! Most of the time when i boot up it automatically chooses one of the neighbors wireless network. I wonder how this wireless thing can be good in terms of security with the CIA and the tracking of bad guys since anyone can roam around and tap into anyones wireless network...
My son invited one of his hacker buddies to my home. He holds every conceivable computer associated certificate. The kid is obsessive/compulsive about passing every one of the exams. He was sure he could break in. He never succeeded.
Check the recent press on the former CEO of Radio Shack. That will give you a clue.