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Broad bandit 2007-08-23

Posted by clype in Articles of Interest, Humanities, Intolerance, Science.
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A man who was spotted in the street using his laptop to access an unsecured wireless connection has been arrested.

The 39-year-old man was seen sitting on a wall outside a home in Chiswick, west London, by two community support officers.

  • When questioned he admitted using the owner’s unsecured wireless internet connection without permission and was arrested on suspicion of stealing a wireless broadband connection.

The man was bailed to October pending further inquiries.

Dishonestly obtaining free internet access is an offence under ‘The Communications Act 2003‘ and a potential breach of ‘The Computer Misuse Act 1990‘.

The move is the latest example of police cracking down on a crime that did not exist several years ago when wireless internet access was relatively rare.

  • In April, a man was cautioned by police after neighbours saw him using a laptop in a car parked outside a house in Redditch, Worcestershire.
  • In 2005, a man was fined £500 for piggybacking on someone else’s wireless broadband connection in London.

Detective Constable Mark Roberts, of the Metropolitan Police computer crime unit, said anyone who illegally uses a broadband link faces arrest. He said:

‘This arrest should act as a warning to anyone who thinks it is acceptable to illegally use other people’s broadband connections.

‘To do so potentially breaches “The Computer Misuse Act” and “The Communications Act”, so computer users need to be aware that this is unlawful and police will investigate any violation we become aware of.’

see also: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/6960304.stm

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