Sophos has revealed that over 50% of people polled admit they have stolen Wi-Fi (wireless broadband) internet access.
The research carried out by Sophos shows that 54 percent of computer users in the UK have admitted breaking the law, by using someone else’s wireless internet access without permission.
According to Sophos, many internet-enabled homes fail to properly secure their wireless connection with passwords and encryption, allowing freeloading passers-by and neighbors to steal internet access.
If someone hops onto your wireless broadband connection to illegally download movies and music from the net, chances are that your internet access slows down and impacts your download limit.
Sophos recommends that home owners and businesses alike set up their networks with security in mind, ensuring that strong encryption is in place to prevent hackers from eavesdropping on communications and potentially stealing usernames, passwords and other confidential information.
“If you’re not encrypting your wireless communications then it’s not hard for cybercriminals in your neighborhood to snoop on what you’re doing, whether it’s surfing or remotely accessing work documents. They may even be able to infect your computer with malware designed to commit identity theft. It’s essential that your Wi-Fi connection is encrypted and that you have not chosen a password for your router which is easy to guess or crack. The problem is that a lot of Wi-Fi equipment is not properly configured when it comes out of the box, or is a headache to setup.”
To preventing strangers from stealing your Wi-Fi connection, use encryption and setup a password for your Wi-Fi device.
Use encryption: Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA and WPA2) is a stronger encryption system than WEP, and can be used to reduce the chances of hackers intercepting your communications.
Use a password: Choose a strong password that has to be used to access your wireless access point. Don’t use the default password that came with your Wi-Fi equipment or a dictionary word that is easy to guess or crack.