Saturday, January 12, 2008

Helped a Friend Leach off Unprotected Wireless Networks

I recently help a friend connect to the internet using "free" (as is several neighbors aren't encrypting their wireless networks) wireless access.

Do you think this is unethical or immoral?

He lives in a condo; middle to low income residental community.

This will save him approximately 70 bucks a month over what he would be paying with comcast or other local broadband providers.

2 Comments:

Blogger Joe Bobby said...

Your assumption is that the owner boradcasting the wireless signal isn't intending for others to use it. How do we know that the opposite isn't true - that the owner of the signal would love nothing more than for others to log on and surf the web to expand their mind? The owner of the signal can always place a lock/password on the signal, or simply pull the plug...so it'd be silly for your friend to rely on it 100% (imagine using the signal to use Skype for some important business meeting...and then you lose the signal). Just my $.02 :)

7:26 PM  
Blogger Denny said...

there are two levels to this question

1) Would the owner mind if your friend leeches off his wireless? Odds are probably not, but that's an assumption. What if he is paying by usage and not a faxed rate? Ask yourself this: if it's not a big deal, why not have the friend go over to the person's house and tell them he is using their wireless networks? Either they person will say no problem, or he may ask for a pay-sharing agreement (ie, since your friend's signal strength will suck, maybe he should pay 20% of the monthly bill)?

2) What about the company providing the service? Your friend is utilizing their services without them receiving compensation. How is this any different from pirate DVDs/music?

9:12 AM  

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