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RE: Home wireless free hotspot
From: "Boyd, Chad" <CBoyd () madden com>
Date: Fri, 16 Apr 2010 21:12:26 +0000

I don't know about the rest of you, but this back and forth has made me laugh several times today. On one hand, you 
have Jay presenting some very compelling arguments, while on the other you have Reginald who believes that just because 
he has a wireless router and a "Terms of Use" scrawled on the back of a napkin, that he somehow qualifies as an ISP in 
the eyes of the law.

In a situation like this, you can't think about this from your perspective. You have to think about it from the 
perspective of the ISP and the police.

When the police are informed of illegal activity, they subpoena the ISP for records so that they can track down the 
offender. If someone is on YOUR network doing something illegal, then in the eyes of the police, YOU are the offender. 
YOU will be the one that has to go sit in a cell while they hash it out.

Sure, after sitting a cell for a few hours they may let you out. That is, if you can prove through some type of logging 
or similar evidence that the illegal activity did not happen from your home, but from someone else connected to your 
network. This is probably after they have confiscated all of the computers in your house though.

Herein lies the real pain though: You have a few certs next to your sig, so you obviously know how to Google on how to 
secure a network. If this were to go to court, how would you defend against your ISP charging that you had no 
authorization from them to provide sub-services and moreover that you allowed the illegal activity?

What you have to remember is that an ISP falls under certain regulations. With that, they are also allowed certain 
protections. You are NOT and ISP. You are an END USER.
Make no mistake. I have a secondary wireless network open to a few people in my building. I fully understand though 
that they are on my network and if they do something that sets off any red flags, those red flags will be next to MY 
name, not theirs.

I understand that your lawyer friend told you that you were good-to-go with this. My recommendation to you would be to 
get a second opinion (preferably from someone that doesn't accept payments in beer).


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