Tougher legislation aimed at protecting copyrighted materials is driving
illegal file sharing underground and causing users to unlawfully
'Piggy-back' off wireless networks in order to download content
anonymously, leaving businesses open to bandwidth abuse and theft. Many
businesses have set up loosely secured hotspots for visitors or for
convenience. Illegal access by outsiders may cause businesses new
headaches as illegal file sharing is traced back to the point of access.
is precedence, however, that may help businesses that get ensnared in
this situation. In 2005, a 40 year old Florida man was arrested and
charged with a felony for stealing bandwidth from a nearby WiFi
connection. The man was charged under a seldom used-Florida law that
prohibits accessing a computer or network knowingly, willfully and
without authorization. The owner of the WiFi connection was concerned he
might be linked to whatever the accused was doing such as accessing
porn sites or child pornography.