Borrowing Neighbors Internet and Wireless Network

That’s a snapshot of  the wireless networks in my neighborhood. A far cry from the one network (mine) that I was use to seeing back in the early 2000s.  If by chance one of those network is yours, you now know that one of your neighbor is a famous Internet blogger.

Please don’t rob me.

I can’t recall which web forum I read this from, but the story goes something like this:

I’ve been trying hard to save money due to hard times, and one way I’ve been doing that is canceling my internet service subscription. For the past couple of months, I have been “borrowing” my neighbor’s Internet. Anyone else doing this?

– Random Web Dude

I applaud the saving mentality but that’s a pretty gray line he’s walking on.

Now I know the debate for the “that’s not stealing” crowd usually goes along the lines of “if they openly broadcast their wireless connection, then its not stealing.”  But if you’re using someone else’s service as your primary means of net access, without prior approval or knowledge… then it gets a little bit shady.

Of course, there’s plenty of different scenarios, and in many cases people that have their networks open just doesn’t care if someone else use their service — occasionally some of these people even openly promote it.

Personally, if you want to save some money by going the sharing route, just ask your neighbors if they’re willing to share.  Be a bit reasonable and maybe chip in a little for their Internet service.

Lastly, if you don’t want anyone piggybacking on your wireless network or stealing your bandwidth, secure your network and the issue will be a moot point. Most modern routers come with a quick setup guide going over securing your wireless service. If you lost your user manual, a quick search on Google by typing in the router’s name and “secure wireless.”