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.
I just can't fight your logic!
If it's in the air, it's fair game!
Oh my yes. Someone could drive by and email a threat to the President. Good luck proving it wasn't you....
but he was not a l33t h@X04
Well, not just that, but terrorist talking to each other and the rest
I'm curious if the instructions that came with your wireless whatever even made more than a passing mention of security.
Bingo! hmmm kind of scary. I bring my laptop in my car and i get wireless connection when i pull into most gas stations and other businesses
And imagine if they were using FR as the rendezvous point. Wouldn't that be a bummer.
There are freeware sniffer programs that can show what addresses your router has assigned. However, they use Winpcap (also free) to detect network cards so most sniffing devices have to be hard wired into the router. There are some wireless cards that work with Winpcap and they are listed on the Winpcap Web site.
This is a reasonable guide to setting up WPA:
If we seen t's posting to each other i think we would get them banned! :) unless they were freepmailing each other then it would be hard US to know what they were doing, although the MODs can probably read that stuff.
You'll see a nice basic primer on all this.
It's not wrong at all. You're being naive.
Anyone who wants it can google up the WEP crack and break in. It can be done in three minutes.
If you are relying on WEP, you are a fool.
"This sort of imbecility is what paases for"
Not all executives are tech "weenies".
And, just in case you did'nt notice, stealing is still a crime...even if the victim is unaware of the theft.
I have a Linksys WPC11 and I've never been able to make it work under any conditions. If I run it in AdHoc mode, I'm getting a signal, but can't ping anybody.
Course my understanding of microsoft networking is almost nonexistent. Bring back VTAM!!!
self ping for later.
Damn! Why don't I have neighbors like that? I just got a laptop and was cruising around for an unprotected connection. I can't believe that none of my neighbors, several of whom work for MS up here in Seattle, don't have a connection - since they work for MS, I was pretty sure it would be unprotected. : )
4.2 Ethernet MAC Address Access Control Lists
In theory, access control lists provide a reasonable level of security when a strong form of identity is used. Unfortunately, this is not the case with MAC addresses for two reasons. First, MAC addresses are easily sniffed by an attacker since they MUST appear in the clear even when WEP is enabled, and second most all of the wireless cards permit the changing of their MAC address via software. As a result, an attacker can easily determine the MAC addresses permitted access via eavesdropping, and then subsequently masquerade as a valid address by programming the desired address into the wireless card by-passing the access control and gaining access to the protected network.
Freepmail in code could probably go on for quite a while until someone in a suit knocked on Jim Rob's door asking to look at the system.
I don't think its stealing, its barrowing something that they can never use again, their bandwith at that exact moment. The only person being hurt is the service provider who is probably overcharging anyway.
I copy the key to a text file and store it on a USB flash drive. Then I copy it to each PC on my wireless network as the PSK. This also makes it easy to change the key over time.
"PIGGYBACKING" is a term dishonest people use to describe stealing.
Stealing is a crime.