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Re: Legality of WEP Cracking
From: "Justin Ferguson" <jnferguson () gmail com>
Date: Mon, 21 May 2007 14:18:53 -0400

Would not a open Wifi router BE "configured so that such electronic
communications is readily accessible to the general public"?

Well, I'm not there have been any rulings on the subject exactly, so
it's probably up to debate. However, if you think about it, its really
no different than intercepting the radio communications between the
handset and base on a cordless phone, which for a long time was a gray
area, (but to my understanding is no longer a gray area), the ECPA
ammended the Wiretap Act in the late 80s (IIRC) to specifically
exclude the radio communication of a cordless phone, so it was open
game. Then there is a huge amount of case law on the subject, which
depending on the court it seems to have gone both ways. Then in 1994
however, Congress amended the wiretap act again, omitting the
exclusion of cordless phones.

So when I look at it, what I see is that the radio waves of a cordless
phone are not all together different in a legal sense from a WIFI
router, and assuming that this idea held up in court, I think it would
be ruled to be held in the same regard, or rather because the cordless
radio data is not held to be generally accessible to the public, I
would expect that wifi would be held in the same regard.

But that's just my opinion, and I may be missing significant factors
of law, and may be totally incorrect in my assumptions.

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