Are you a Wi-Fi thief?

More than half of all computer users have secretly tapped into someone else’s Wi-Fi wireless broadband network, according to a Sophos study reported by The Times Online.

But what most them didn’t know – or preferred not to think about – is that by doing so they were committing a crime for which they could receive fines or a suspended jail sentence.

The survey of British computer users found that 54% of respondents have illegally tapped into a private Wi-Fi network. Wi-Fi networks are common home-based wireless broadband networks that can be created by purchasing a cheap Wi-Fi router.

According to The Times Online, police in Britain regard Wi-Fi tapping as a serious offence because the tapper can download illegal material to their own computer in a way that makes it appear the owner of the network is responsible.

Eleven people have been arrested for Wi-Fi tapping in Britain since it became an offence there.

For the owners of private Wi-Fi networks, the lesson is to ensure that security measures are in place to prevent unauthorised access.

You can help us (and help yourself)

Small and medium businesses and startups have never needed credible, independent journalism and information more than now.

That’s our job at SmartCompany: to keep you informed with the news, interviews and analysis you need to manage your way through this unprecedented crisis.

Now, there’s a way you can help us keep doing this: by becoming a SmartCompany supporter.

Even a small contribution will help us to keep doing the journalism that keeps Australia’s entrepreneurs informed.

Trending