Don’t Steal Wi-Fi

So you’re sitting there playing on your phone, tablet, or desktop, and messing with the wi-fi. You notice an unsecured (open) wi-fi connection available with four bars and connect. It’s flying! Woot!



OK, yes, there are a lot of open wireless connections around. Sometimes it’s because they don’t know how to password it. Sometimes it’s because they don’t realize others can connect to it. Sometimes it’s because they want to mess with people. Regardless, connecting to a neighbor’s unsecured wi-fi is a bad idea.


Well, first of all, it’s illegal.

If your neighbor is unaware that you’re connecting and has not given you permission to do so, it is illegal for you to connect to – steal – his wi-fi.

Also, it’s potentially dangerous.

While the most common situation is that the neighbor is not very computer literate, there are at least two ways that this can be dangerous.

  • Your neighbor might NOT be computer illiterate… you may be neighbor to a hacker.
  • Your neighbor might be more lacking net-savvy than you think, and could pick up a virus – which may then be transmitted to your connected device.

So, yeah. This is one of those things where the saying, “Just because you CAN, doesn’t mean you SHOULD” applies. If you want wireless internet, either purchase your own router, or go to a public hotspot, such as a restaurant or park, where they offer free wi-fi.

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