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EFF To Unveil Open Wireless Router For Open Wireless Movement

samzenpus posted about a month ago | from the router-to-the-people dept.

Open Source 184

hypnosec writes A new movement dubbed the Open Wireless Movement is asking users to open up their private Wi-Fi networks to total strangers – a random act of kindness – with an aim of better securing networks and facilitating better use of finite broadband resources. The movement is supported by non-profit and pro-internet rights organizations like the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), Mozilla, Open Rights Group, and Free Press among others. The EFF is planning to unveil one such innovation – Open Wireless Router – at the Hackers on Planet Earth (HOPE X) conference to be held next month on New York. This firmware will allow individuals to share their private Wi-Fi to total strangers to anyone without a password.

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Doesn't this violate TOS? (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47293601)

I'm sure at least some ISPs stipulate in their terms of service that a subscriber cannot provide internet access to the general public without upgrading to some other (more expensive) plan. Surely we can move towards a more secure internet without strongly hinting that people should violate their contracts.

Re:Doesn't this violate TOS? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47293715)

You better not use the Internet for homework, because effectively
- your professor is sending you a request,
- you fulfill it using your own bandwidth,
- you give back the answer to the professor.

Exactly like opening up your router.

Re:Doesn't this violate TOS? (3, Funny)

FatdogHaiku (978357) | about a month ago | (#47293833)

You better not use the Internet for homework, because effectively
- your professor is sending you a request,
- you fulfill it using your own bandwidth,
- you give back the answer to the professor.

Exactly like opening up your router.

With latency that can be measured using an hour glass...

Re:Doesn't this violate TOS? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47294029)

Analogies are clearly not your thing, its time to stop posting

Re:Doesn't this violate TOS? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47294717)

Analogies are clearly not your thing, its time to stop posting

Need a car analogy?

It is driving down a highway and picking up a hitch-hiker, but you put them in a sectioned off area like cop cars / taxis have instead of the normal passenger seating.

Re:Doesn't this violate TOS? (1, Insightful)

Entropius (188861) | about a month ago | (#47293773)

Frankly, if ISP's want to prevent overuse of their networks they should impose transfer caps. Within those caps it shouldn't matter whether I want to deliver my own bits or bits on behalf of someone else.

Re:Doesn't this violate TOS? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47293859)

The sharer should be able to cap, prioritize and limit the traffic already in the router. ISP should only be concerned of the capacity their already rented to the client.

Re:Doesn't this violate TOS? (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47293789)

Exactly this. Some ISPs are sharing wireless from your modem for other ISP customers. But if you share your wireless you are in violation of ToS. You could already find a bomb threat sent from your network... because of the ISP.

Re:Doesn't this violate TOS? (4, Interesting)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about a month ago | (#47294039)

I'm sure at least some ISPs stipulate in their terms of service that a subscriber cannot provide internet access to the general public without upgrading to some other (more expensive) plan. Surely we can move towards a more secure internet without strongly hinting that people should violate their contracts.

I work for a moderately large ISP
The answer to your question is "yes"
but... but you have to understand that the majority of your agreement with your ISP is there to give them legal immunity against your activities. I've worked for several ISPs and none of them cared how their customers used their service.

They only start caring when your activity:
A. Costs them money
B. Gets them into legal jeopardy... which leads back to A

When ISPs got federal immunity from prosecution for the activities of their users, that was a great thing for the users because the ISPs were completely off the hook... so the ISPs wouldn't be policing your activity.

So, that I know of, no ISP has a program where they police what you do. That would be a waste of resources. Bandwidth caps are just there to encourage you to buy larger packages or not suck up all the bandwidth in your neighborhood. They are rarely enforce effectively. They're required to do something about DCMA notices, and I've even been on those teams. It's incredibly labor intensive, and what they are basically doing is telling a PAYING customer that some non-paying customer claims you did something wrong. If you stopped pirating, you might not need Internet. So usually it just ends up that they build some automated system to forward the complaint to you and then they forget about it. If you do other stuff or start causing problems, they yea, they might dig up that data and use it to boot you. But that's VERY rare. I can count the number of times I've seen a customer lose their service on one hand. And that's 14yrs of experience. The few that did get booted usually involved death threats to the billing department. That's how sever it has to get. Even people that launch DDOS attacks get warned that "Someone probably hacked your computer, please fix it."

Re:Doesn't this violate TOS? (4, Informative)

NotSanguine (1917456) | about a month ago | (#47294147)

So, that I know of, no ISP has a program where they police what you do.

Really? [zdnet.com] That's just not so. [yahoo.com] What is more, the abusive contracts/TOS [facepunch.com] /AUP [comcast.com] do restrict what you allowed to do. Whether or not that's actively policed is a different question.

These types of restrictions are one of the biggest threats to the real promise of the Internet IMHO -- the truly free sharing of ideas and information.

Re:Doesn't this violate TOS? (5, Interesting)

Mr. Slippery (47854) | about a month ago | (#47294265)

So, that I know of, no ISP has a program where they police what you do.

My ISP is Sprint/Clearwire. (Complicated corporate and branding relationship.) I got a nastygram from them about peer-to-peer downloads. They didn't care that I was downloads GNU/Linux distros, they didn't want me using PtP at all. (So I got a VPN account and flipped them the bird.)

Re:Doesn't this violate TOS? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47295011)

In most cable companies cases, the real reason they implement data caps or throttling is to protect their cable TV business. They want you buying from them, so the service has to suck enough so it can't replace cable TV itself. (Not to mention Comcast owns NBC-Universal, so now they also don't want you torrenting their content over their own ISP.)

What about Verizon? They aren't a traditional media/cable company. They're just a bunch of jerks. (Same with Verizon Wireless. Good network, bad policies.) ...These companies really need to be vertically separated.

Re:Doesn't this violate TOS? (3, Insightful)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | about a month ago | (#47294045)

I'm sure at least some ISPs stipulate in their terms of service that a subscriber cannot provide internet access to the general public without upgrading to some other (more expensive) plan. Surely we can move towards a more secure internet without strongly hinting that people should violate their contracts.

I pay for my bandwidth. What I do with it once I've paid for it is none of my ISP's goddamned business. They aren't my parents, they aren't the government, they aren't the police. They're service providers. So let them provide the service that's paid for, then shut the hell up. If they don't like it they can suck eggs, because I ALREADY PAID FOR IT.

I am literally a block away from my ISP. I've been running an open access point for more than 5 years. And it's a good signal... they can probably see it in their office.

Re:Doesn't this violate TOS? (1)

marcello_dl (667940) | about a month ago | (#47294319)

I have a cunning plan, my lord.
  - The guest doesn't get open internet access.
  - The wifi provider opens up a secure tunnel with a server designated, or owned by the guest. The ISP is foiled.
  - The guest connect to it and sets up a secure tunnel itself, through which he accesses the internet. The wifi provider is foiled as it cannot snoop on it and cannot be considered responsible by what the guest does, morally. Legally it's another matter, but then, the law is immoral. Also if the guest misbehaves the investigators will find the server designated/owned by the guest first, which is probably the right place to investigate if you want to find the real source.

Re:Doesn't this violate TOS? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47294497)

(...) Legally it's another matter, but then, the law is immoral.

I think the word you're looking for there is amoral.

Re: Doesn't this violate TOS? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47294801)

No. He got it right. Rich bastards set up an elite power club that exempts themselves from laws they write, and is impossible to gee them out of office without them dieing. - fuck you Ted Kennedy. Then we vote their wives into office. Fuck you Hillary Clinton. O their sons. Fuck you George Bush. It is not only immoral, it's criminal.
Fuck you american dumbshits you do it to yourselves. Almost forgot - fuck you comcast. And fuck you beta.

Reckless (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47293613)

Recommending this to users who don't know exactly what they are doing can only be described as reckless. Without significant changes to the law and/or the way the internet works, opening up your network to complete strangers is a minefield and a lawsuit waiting to happen, even if you keep the public Wifi separate and only allow internet access. Please don't put "civilians" at risk to further your cause.

Re:Reckless (4, Insightful)

scottbomb (1290580) | about a month ago | (#47293697)

This. If I didn't have to worry about people torrenting movies or downloading kiddie porn, I'd be happy to share some bandwidth. Unfortunately, the real world dictates I not even consider this.

Re:Reckless (4, Insightful)

pradeepsekar (793666) | about a month ago | (#47293711)

Just wait till someone sends a bomb threat using your Wifi and you find police at your doorstep wanting to arrest you! The legal framework and the enlightened enforcement do not exist as yet for sharing your internet connection safely with strangers.

Re:Reckless (1)

Entropius (188861) | about a month ago | (#47293781)

If someone wants to send a bomb threat using someone else's wifi there is a Starbucks or a McDonalds on every corner.

Re:Reckless (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47294571)

Unless they want to specifically frame someone...

Re:Reckless (1)

vux984 (928602) | about a month ago | (#47295037)

Just wait till someone sends a bomb threat using your Wifi

That's why I don't own a cellphone. Someone might clone my phone and phone in bomb threats.

I also don't throw away any garbage, i just pile it up in my basement. If I throw it out it might end up at some crime scene somehow and get traced back to me. I just can't take the risk. SWAT teams could break in at night and kill the dog... its happened to people.

Me, I've always liked the state motto of NH... "Live Free or Die." because that about sums it up. Better to live free and take a few risks than to cower in fear waiting to die.

Re:Reckless (1, Troll)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | about a month ago | (#47293751)

Unfortunately, the real world dictates I not even consider this.

Just to split hairs - the legal world is the fictional one. In reality people can just share their connections with others in a grand mutual aid* collaboration. It's the made-up rules (legal fictions) that screw it all up.

Granted, there are large numbers of men with guns who hold these fictions to be reality.

* mine blocks outgoing SMTP, limits to 1Mbps max with a floor around 384Kbps if I'm using the rest.

Re:Reckless (0)

pushing-robot (1037830) | about a month ago | (#47293815)

Yes, and in the 'real' world anyone can break into your home, take your stuff, rape you, kill you, and eat your liver with fava beans and a nice chianti.

So forgive me for staying in the fictional 'legal' world; I'm not quite ready to throw away all of civilization whenever it happens to inconvenience me.

Re:Reckless (1)

tepples (727027) | about a month ago | (#47294001)

mine blocks outgoing SMTP

Including authenticated [wikipedia.org] message submission on port 587 with STARTTLS [wikipedia.org] ?

Re:Reckless (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47293801)

Sounds like a search of your house would turn up child porn and bombs. Reported

mod +10 informative (1)

swschrad (312009) | about a month ago | (#47294227)

this is one of the times in which busting the top off the thermometer is justified. unless the MafIAA is vanquished, this is infinite jeopardy.

Re:Reckless (1)

swillden (191260) | about a month ago | (#47294315)

This. If I didn't have to worry about people torrenting movies or downloading kiddie porn, I'd be happy to share some bandwidth. Unfortunately, the real world dictates I not even consider this.

I hear this all the time, but I've yet to see a single example of someone being prosecuted for someone else's use of their bandwidth. On the other hand, I've seen numerous cases of judges ruling that merely because activity occurred on a specific IP address, that doesn't prove that the owner of that address did them. If anything, it seems to me that sharing your connection provides you with plausible deniability.

Re:Reckless (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47294429)

It is not about getting convicted for someone else's deeds or not. The trouble you get yourself into is quite sufficient without ultimately taking the blame. People have had their homes raided and their equipment seized or have been sued for damages because someone else abused their internet connection. Sure, they're not liable for the actions of others, but they were the primary suspects because whatever happened was committed through their internet access account. So they had to take spend time and money to defend their legal standing as well as their reputation: The neighbors don't easily forget when your home is raided because you're a suspect in a bomb threat or child pornography investigation. It is difficult to believe that you are not aware of this, as that is precisely why the EFF is involved: They want to change the expectation that the IP address will lead to the culprit. There would be no need to change that expectation if it didn't exist today and cause aforementioned raids, seizures and lawsuits.

If the EFF wants to fight that fight, they should make the router host the connections on EFF IP addresses and not log whose router used which IP address at a given time. Then they can deal with the repercussions. The EFF is better equipped to do this and most certainly better informed about the risks than the poor schmucks they want to unload the risks on.

Re:Reckless (1)

swillden (191260) | about a month ago | (#47294481)

People have had their homes raided and their equipment seized or have been sued for damages because someone else abused their internet connection.

Cite?

Re:Reckless (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47294625)

The Arstechnica article has some links. And again, how can you believe that this problem isn't real when "account owner equals primary suspect" is the stated reason for the EFF's involvement in the first place?

Re:Reckless (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47294447)

Sounds like you just want to use your neighbor's connection to download child porn.

Re:Reckless (1)

symbolset (646467) | about a month ago | (#47294031)

Operating an open wireless network for your own convenience is not a violation of TOS. Nor is calling it "Use Me Free WiFi".

Something like this already exists... (3, Interesting)

CaptainOfSpray (1229754) | about a month ago | (#47293633)

In UK. If you have your broadband from BT, you can use wifi from any router that is advertising FON service. You need to logon with your BT account credentials, but it's otherwise free to use. If you are out and about, and you need wifi, just drive into a residential area. There will one or more FON routers on almost any street.

Re:Something like this already exists... (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47293669)

No, this is different. FON gives all guest users their own network address and keeps their account on file for the connection, so whatever they do isn't tied to your account. The OpenWireless router does no such thing. While it separates the guests from each other and your local network, their internet access uses your public IP address and if they do anything illegal or offensive, your account comes up for that. This is intentional, sort of, because these "freedom activists" want to create a critical mass of open wireless networks where the IP can not be used to identify the actual perpetrator. One can only hope that they make this very clear to anyone interested in their router. It's one thing to stand up and say "I am Spartacus", it's quite another to point at someone else and say "he is Spartacus".

Re:Something like this already exists... (1)

monkey999 (3597657) | about a month ago | (#47293965)

these "freedom activists" ... the actual perpetrator.

If someone is active in supporting freedom then they are a freedom activist - no scare quotes needed. Which concept are you implying is dubious: freedom or being an activist? OTOH people can be identified and punished for saying or doing things online that have no victims apart from political ideologies - so they are 'perpetrators' not perpetrators.

It's one thing to stand up and say "I am Spartacus", it's quite another to point at someone else and say "he is Spartacus".

I don't quite get this, if you explicitly allow some dissident (called 'Spartacus', say) to use your network and identify as yourself, how isn't that you yourself saying 'I am Spartacus'?

Re:Something like this already exists... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47294059)

The people running these routers are saying "I am Spartacus", if they truly know what it is they're doing. If you knowingly take that risk, you are a freedom fighter, no quotes. If you try to get someone else to take that risk, possibly without that someone realizing the danger he puts himself in, then you're in a sense saying "he is Spartacus" and then you're a "freedom fighter", with quotes.

I am fine with sharing as long as QoS and firewall (5, Insightful)

mrflash818 (226638) | about a month ago | (#47293639)

I am fine with sharing my network and wi-fi bandwidth, as long as two conditions are met

1. That the open public Wi-Fi is QoS, so it cannot max out my connection, and starve my own private WPA2/AES wi-fi of needed bandwidth (So yes, I will share, but am gonna be a bit frugal on how much I am willing to share. Don't want someone streaming HD movies for free, but email and regular web browsing bandwidth is OK.)

2. That the open Wi-Fi is fully firewalled and separate from my own home network.

Re:I am fine with sharing as long as QoS and firew (1)

SteveWoz (152247) | about a month ago | (#47293731)

Spammers or hackers could get your IP turned off. But I'd do it anyway to be helpful.

Re:I am fine with sharing as long as QoS and firew (2)

symbolset (646467) | about a month ago | (#47294291)

The vast majority of people are not jerks.

Re:I am fine with sharing as long as QoS and firew (1)

iggymanz (596061) | about a month ago | (#47293733)

funny you have no conditions regarding the legal framework; you are perfectly fine with getting blamed for the actions of those who use your network (e.g. door getting kicked in at 3am and armed statsi knocking you and your loved ones to the floor)

Re:I am fine with sharing as long as QoS and firew (1)

monkey999 (3597657) | about a month ago | (#47293981)

Sometimes people do things when they're not "perfectly fine" with possible consequences because it's the right thing to do. Its called morality.

Re:I am fine with sharing as long as QoS and firew (0)

iggymanz (596061) | about a month ago | (#47294207)

oh, sharing wifi is a moral obligation and "the right thing to do"? you are funny

Re:I am fine with sharing as long as QoS and firew (1)

jeIlomizer (3670951) | about a month ago | (#47294503)

Sharing wifi is moral, but it's not an obligation.

Re:I am fine with sharing as long as QoS and firew (1)

einsteinbutthole (3641491) | about a month ago | (#47295029)

false conflation. sharing wifi used to be fairly common. i regularly connected to some neighbor's open network called "fuckin_theif" and i shared mine when i could afford to pay an ISP. it's the threat of legal action, not selfishness, that's changed the culture.

Re:I am fine with sharing as long as QoS and firew (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47293745)

8 years and running:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/FON

But keep in mind FON has weaknesses. It uses MAC filtering/whitelisting on an open network (at least it was when I stopped using it 2 years ago), users are at risk of session hijacking, so always logout when you are done using the accesspoint and avoid setting up any connection other that VPNs)

Re:I am fine with sharing as long as QoS and firew (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47294081)

I use a separate router to give open access to WiFi, and can connect its wired ports inside the house if necessary. The open router is mostly used by guests. Our primary router (and the LAN, printers, servers, etc. behind it) is inaccessible to the open router. Both routers are plugged into the optical switch and get different IP addresses, and both share a 100/100Mbps symmetric link.

Eh? (2)

ledow (319597) | about a month ago | (#47293645)

"with an aim of better securing networks and facilitating better use of finite broadband resources"

If we have finite broadband resources, and they are already scarce enough that customers are demanding more from their connections that can be given to them, why will allowing random passing strangers to decrease the amount of available bandwidth to everyone else help?

Sorry, it's just an open wifi hotspot. We don't want really them in our homes. We certainly don't want random passing strangers to have them on our connection and traceable only to ourselves, for the hassle if nothing else.

Surely my freedom of using my own computing resources trumps anyone else's?

The only thing I can see them useful for is hacking their firmware. Otherwise, I could just switch back on the various options my ISP tries to force onto my router to share with random strangers that I turned off in the first place.

Problem #1: Usage Cap (5, Insightful)

Bill_the_Engineer (772575) | about a month ago | (#47293657)

My current router allows me to grant guest access to my cable modem with no fear of the guests accessing my local network. Unfortunately thanks to Netflix and Amazon, I'm barely staying within my usage cap with Comcast as it is. Comcast is looking for any excuse to automatically "upgrade" my monthly service for an additional fee, and I'm not going to make that possible by giving away free internet access.

Re:Problem #1: Usage Cap (5, Insightful)

mwvdlee (775178) | about a month ago | (#47293691)

Problem #2: Liability

In my country, the owner of a router can be held liable for the data transmitted throught it. If some anonymous user uses an open WiFi connection to download child pornography or hacks the pentagon servers, the owner of the router can be held atleast partly responsible. I don't know about regulations in the USA, but I'd damn well make certain the law protects the owner of a router before advising them to open up the connection.

Re:Problem #1: Usage Cap (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47293707)

Germany? No, you're not liable for the data transmitted through your internet connection by someone else. You're liable for failing to take precautions against illegal use of your internet connection. The difference may seem moot, but if someone distributes child pornography through your Wifi, you're not on the hook for distribution of child pornography. (IANAL though: If this happens to you, ask a lawyer.)

Re: Problem #1: Usage Cap (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47293799)

In Deutschland you're liable for anything if you're a Juden. Heil scheisse!

Re:Problem #1: Usage Cap (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47293919)

When he said "can be held partially responsible", that's what that means; German law is no different from other law (other than that it generally is more restrictive and less clear).

Furthermore, courts will likely assume in Germany as elsewhere, that there is a good chance that the illegal content actually does belong to the hotspot owner and that he set up a public hotspot simply to conceal his activities. They certainly have sufficient cause to dig deeply through every single computer you have in your home.

Re:Problem #1: Usage Cap (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47293719)

Comcast was nice enough to open a WiFi connection from the cable modem to other Comcast customers with the SSID "xfinititywifi". Nothing like being force to share a crappy feed into the house with complete strangers. I wouldn't mind if they did it on the utility pole where bandwidth is plentiful but no they are doing it on my end of a shitty feed line and won't come out and improve my drop.

Re:Problem #1: Usage Cap (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47293759)

All you have to do is set the SSID to some name similar to "passwordisCat", or "PasswordIsFree". And if some one does happen to do something illegal they also accessed your network illegally.

Re:Problem #1: Usage Cap (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47293793)

Completely wrong. Your SSID examples imply that permission is given and therefore they did not access your network illegally.

Re:Problem #1: Usage Cap (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47294015)

Sounds legit, and I'm sure it'll hold up in court. No daily ass rapes in your future if you do this!

Re:Problem #1: Usage Cap (1)

aliquis (678370) | about a month ago | (#47293765)

Then again if everyone did this would that law make sense / be resonable to uphold?

Re:Problem #1: Usage Cap (1)

StripedCow (776465) | about a month ago | (#47294301)

Uhh, practically everybody is pirating music and movies, and there is still a law that says this is criminal behavior.

Re:Problem #1: Usage Cap (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47294225)

Perhaps there's a way to only allow Tor traffic, which is protected with strong encryption. This solves the liability problem.

Re:Problem #1: Usage Cap (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47293807)

See Bill you are the problem. If ten years ago you promoted open wifi and shared your network, and it was widely adopted in 2014. Then Companies like comcast would've had a much harder time implementing bandwidth-caps. But bill you live in a police state, scared all the time, so to pacify your fear you must instil it in your neighbours.

Re:Problem #1: Usage Cap (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47294179)

Actually if we did promote open wifi ten years ago, Comcast and everyone else would have implemented usage caps a long time ago. Don't be too upset, I'm sure you'll be able to smooch off of someone else's connection.

Re:Problem #1: Usage Cap (1)

HockeyPuck (141947) | about a month ago | (#47293955)

Unfortunately thanks to Netflix and Amazon, I'm barely staying within my usage cap with Comcast as it is.

What the hell are you downloading? Raw uncompressed blu-ray images? According to Netflix's usage page [netflix.com] , the highest quality streams use HD: 3 GB per hour, 3D: 4.7 GB per hour, Ultra HD 4K: 7 GB per hour.

For a HD stream, it would take you over 80 hours to reach 250GB. 40, 2hr HD movies. Wow. Just Wow. The average American watches 2.8hrs [bls.gov] of TV per day. If you download 100% of only HD content from Amazon/Netflix every month you'll be about at the 80+hrs / month of usage. Still a lot of downloading, given that you can't watch live events (sports/news broadcasts). Btw, even the World Cup isn't broadcast in 1080p like on broadcast/cable TV.

The current caps are from 250GB to 350GB depending on your service area. In fact, if you look at your data usage [comcast.com] , you'll notice that they've suspended the 250GB cap enforcement.

You do realize that you fall into the .000001% of consumers who should be on a business plan if they want to download 50TB/month.

Remember no business caters to the .0000001% of consumers regardless of their business. You should vote with your dollars, find a provider that will give you unlimited usage with higher bandwidth. I'm sure there's plenty of ISPs that would be willing to drop an OC48 (2.4Gb) into your house for a quite a few grand a month. Or a Comcast business solution [comcast.com] that has no cap.

Surely a 150Mbdown 20Mb up with no caps for $250/month is enough for you and your entire family to watch HDs every minute of every day until your eyeballs rot. Just think, with 150Mb/s down you could consume about 65GB/hr, or 20 HD movies per hour 24hrs per day, 7 days per week...

Right tool for the right job. Obviously you want Commercial Services at Residential Pricing and you don't meet the requirements of the typical Residential user, so switch to Commercial Services and be happy.

Over 330 hours per month for family of four (2)

tepples (727027) | about a month ago | (#47294025)

For a HD stream, it would take you over 80 hours to reach 250GB. 40, 2hr HD movies. Wow. Just Wow. The average American watches 2.8hrs of TV per day

With four Americans in a household, that could reach 11.2 hours per day, or over 330 hours per month.

Re:Problem #1: Usage Cap (1)

Belial6 (794905) | about a month ago | (#47294093)

It is WAY to late in the game for anyone to be using the bad math of counting only one person per household. That argument has been made too many times, and refuted too many times for it to be considered an honest mistake.

Re:Problem #1: Usage Cap (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47294213)

What the hell are you downloading?

Does it matter? Even if he was only using 75% of his monthly allowance, why risk having multiple anonymous people use more than the remaining 25%?

you'll notice that they've suspended the 250GB cap enforcement.

You need to check your facts. Comcast has enabled the 300GB cap enforcement in the southeast US a couple of months ago. That link you provided is only showing information for your particular market area.

Your dissertation is quite long and never really answered the question of why he should spend more money so that someone else can have free internet.

Don't do it in totalitarian USA (2, Insightful)

Jorge666 (3709467) | about a month ago | (#47293671)

This country is out of control. No other country on Earth puts large number of its own citizens in jails. Streets are filled with security forces like in some banana republic.
Two of my sons are welcomed by cop at the entrance to school. It is the same at grocery shop and movie theater. Police is buying military equipment and heavily trained forces in Iraq are under direct control of Washington administration in case people will unleash their unhappiness on the street.

North Korea man, it is freaking North Korea.

Re:Don't do it in totalitarian USA (2)

ArcadeMan (2766669) | about a month ago | (#47293699)

If you happen to need cops when you're in Canada, simply go to your nearest Tim Hortons.

Re:Don't do it in totalitarian USA (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47293933)

Here in Hampton Roads Virginia, I swear the police and sheriff deptartments have opened a sub-station at the local Starbucks.

Re:Don't do it in totalitarian USA (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47293839)

Any country with a sufficiently high percentage of Catholics will become a third world shit hole with out of control crime and militarized police. Just check out Brazil or Mexico sometime. Welcome to the future.

Will raise the prices of ISP service (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47293705)

This will raise the price for everyone even if they don't want to "share". In essence, just like taxes/gov. People taking something for doing nothing. Nice.

Legalities (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47293713)

If this gained enough adopters, how would the regulation of free wifi users work if they download a bunch of kiddie porn or something? Does the homeowner get prosecuted?

OR, can the homeowner do the same thing and claim "I don't know it must have been one of those darn free wifi users."

Legalities (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47293935)

If this gained enough adopters, how would the regulation of free wifi users work if they download a bunch of kiddie porn or something? Does the homeowner get prosecuted?

OR, can the homeowner do the same thing and claim "I don't know it must have been one of those darn free wifi users."

Unless of course, we stop going after IP addresses and start going after CC numbers instead... Which will stop this nonsense.

Re:Legalities (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47293971)

When every computer in a home is taken and analyzed it'll be determined, perhaps months later, if such illegal activities occurred. Had a client have open wifi on a busy road. He was accused of downloading child porn. Cops kept telling him they found something and fess up. Finally they couldn't stonewall his lawyer anymore for forensics of his own and they said 'oh we didn't find anything, here are your computers'. Months of high stress.

this a test (1)

Julius Vindex (3709497) | about a month ago | (#47293721)

test comment

Re:this a test (1)

monkey999 (3597657) | about a month ago | (#47293917)

Your test failed.

Re:this a test (1)

MonkeyBob (904999) | about a month ago | (#47294887)

Are you sure? He may have been testing using his neighbors Wifi.

Re:this a test (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47294657)

The NSA has concluded that your test comment posted through your Neighbours WPA encrypted WiFi (that you compromised) > 35 compromised proxies all over the world > Tor network > free VPN has successfully been traced...

Expect a knock at the door soon.

Open up the Tower, not the Router!! (1)

zenlessyank (748553) | about a month ago | (#47293735)

If the EFF want to give open access then do it from cell phone towers. We already have slow broadband and this will just make it slower. Never mind the kiddie porn and the bomb threats getting linked to an innocent user's router/mac address. Oh yea, this should make wardriving and collecting these 'public' addresses that much easier for assholes to hide. Sounds like it is just an easy way for the NSA to gather the last bit of info without any new warrants. mod down

You mean like CableWifi does? (1)

jpellino (202698) | about a month ago | (#47293771)

The innovation here is not opening a network on your router to perfect strangers, nor is it having FOSS running your wifi router. This is more of a theoretical experiment, to take the existing paid-for-services model and try and build an "information wants to be free" system knitted into it. Which will be fine until router owners hit their monthly limit and run sputtering back to their ISP or outside users realize they're getting 3G/ISDN speeds anywhere they please and don't like it. "The false notion that an IP address could be used as a sole identifier is finally a thing of the past, creating a privacy-enhancing norm of shared networks." Right. Good luck to the first several thousand defendants of DOJ warrants who claim anything noxious on their network was one of hundreds of strangers driving by their house. I'm not sure the EFF has the manpower to tackle that one. Nobility of intent is nice and all, but I think we're too far into the business model for networking for this to have much of an impact - the Neo900 of data networks.

MAJOR Problems (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47293837)

Someone uses one's Open WiFi to call in the Police/SWAT on another party and presto they come looking for you to blame for the incident.
Houseguest downloads child porn, cops show up - http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2014/05/houseguest-downloads-child-porn-cops-show-up/
Someone sits outside one's WiFi location and slurps up images and videos sucking one's bandwidth alocation dry before moving on to the next unsuspecting Open WiFi.
These issues will have to be limited, delimited or totaly removed before any reasonable person would Open their WiFi.
EFF - time for you to step in and create some release forms and software to clearly indicate who did what with one's Open WiFi!

Help Yourself (1)

aviators99 (895782) | about a month ago | (#47293863)

My WiFi SSID has been called "Help Yourself" for years. I've never had any issues, probably because every router I've had has turned out to be so crappy that I can barely get a signal from the other side of the house, let alone the street. Every now and then I see some people joining. I don't use WiFi encryption, because I don't think the speed loss is worth it, and all of the websites I visit that contain information I don't want to share use HTTPS.

Re:Help Yourself (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47294065)

So you're a netgear user then?

Heh heh... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47294163)

Personally, my router is nailed to the wall of the basement at my demarc, so no matter which one I've used (latest NetGear has actually been pretty bombproof going on 4 years), it pretty much hits the floors above it and drops off dramatically after that. Which is fine. I don't surf and mow the lawn, my access logs look good, just can't figure out if it's the wife or the kids visiting who have a device called IMNSA. Gotta remember to ask them if I think of it.

Heh heh... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47294469)

Personally, my router is nailed to the wall of the basement at my demarc, so no matter which one I've used (latest NetGear has actually been pretty bombproof going on 4 years), it pretty much hits the floors above it and drops off dramatically after that. Which is fine. I don't surf and mow the lawn, my access logs look good, just can't figure out if it's the wife or the kids visiting who have a device called IMNSA. Gotta remember to ask them if I think of it.

Probably the same guy who connects to my WiFi with the name IMCIA

Re:Heh heh... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47295025)

Damn BETA not quoting parent properly..

DICE fix this #betasux

Not going to happen (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47293873)

Too many ISPs now mandate that the user has at least WEP as a bare minimum on their wireless...

You would need to write a law making such clauses in an ISP's ToS illegal as quite often, ISPs tend to enforce it regardless of wherever it's your ISP's provided router or your own.

Open your Wifi and your mind will follow (1, Interesting)

monkey999 (3597657) | about a month ago | (#47293913)

All the people saying "don't open your router because then the gov't will hold you responsible for things other people use it for" are missing the point. This is exactly why this is a freedom of speech issue and why the EFF is involved in the first place.
The gov't would like every act online to be traceable to an individual who can then be held responsible for it.
Freedom of speech means freedom from punishment because of your speech. The Soviets used to have a joke "everybody in Russia is free to say what they like - they're just not free to stay out of prison afterwards."
The only way to guarantee FoS is anonymity. The gov't can't punish you if they can't find you. Which is why dictatorships [yahoo.com] hate [independent.co.uk] online anonymity.
Even if it was true that you could be held responsible for things others do using your router, you'd still have a duty [squte.com] to let them do it.
IANAL but AFAIK there is no legal basis in either the UK or US to punish someone for enabling someone else to commit a crime, unless it was part of a deliberate conspiracy, or 'common purpose'. So, (if its true at all that this is 'dangerous') the authorities are trying to illegally blackmail people into supporting their unconstitutional attempt to destroy anonymous Internet access.
Submitting to this blackmail is treason. Keep your country free, Keep your WiFi free.

Open Wireless - Protections for Client? (1)

Marcaen (568601) | about a month ago | (#47293929)

The FAQ and info on https://openwireless.org/ [openwireless.org] doesn't seem to address security and privacy from the "guest user" point of view. They do have a link at the top "Using a network named "openwireless.org"? Check out important information about this network." which provides information for a guest user - but only mentions about being considerate and not abusing the service.

How does a user establish trust with each Open Wireless access point in order to determine it is not a rogue/fake AP? How are potential guest users being educated, besides a mention of HTTPS Everywhere? (Which most potential guest users don't really understand, and can also easily be manipulated into overriding SSL security warnings, such as one that may come up if the guest is being routed through a mitm SSL proxy.)

If this does become more widespread, I could definitely see a lot of money to be made for "Open Wireless VPN proxy" subscription services. But if the point is to "help change the way people and businesses think about Internet service" then shouldn't the guest user security issues be in the forefront with at least as much important as the host?

For those interested in HOPEX (0)

stox (131684) | about a month ago | (#47293939)

Come to NYC on July 18-20, http://x.hope.net/ [hope.net] at the Hotel Pennsylvania, just across the street from Penn Station and Madison Square Garden.

Tickets are only $120 for all three days.

This year's keynote is Daniel Ellsberg of Pentagon Papers fame.

Open up my wireless to anybody? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47294011)

That is NOT happening.

It's all fun and games until the heavily armed tactial team is kicking down my doors, smashing my windows, and messing my house up like an Israeli bulldozer, with the media in tow, because some random sick fuck decided to use my connection to procure his daily fix of sick shit involving three year olds, or attempt to arrange a murder, or even something that is 100% benign like download yesterday's soccer match, or whatever gets made illegal next week.

Another issue is that I only have 250 gigs to spare a month, up and down combined. It's a struggle keeping under that as it is. A fair chunk of that goes to an internal tor relay, and even running a non exit relay gets me more attention than I like sometimes. I used to run a freenet node too but I just can't spare the bandwidth anymore.

Anybody who does this, I salute you and your giant brass balls.

No, EFF, fuck you if you think I'm doing that (0)

EmagGeek (574360) | about a month ago | (#47294083)

Add this to the list of things that will never ever happen.

Guess who gets to go to prison when some "complete stranger" starts downloading kiddie pr0n through my home Internet connection.

Re:No, EFF, fuck you if you think I'm doing that (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47294269)

That's only because our laws and our country are broken and need fixing. There's no reason to send someone to prison for something another person did, but you are correct: in the US currently that is entirely possible. That's what happens when you live in an out of control police state.

Re:No, EFF, fuck you if you think I'm doing that (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47294505)

You miserable coward. That your government is fucking you hard, so hard that you dare not share a resource with a stranger for fear of being locked up, is no reason to level a "fuck you" toward a group that are actually fighting for your freedom.

Nothing so clearly highlights the problem with humanity than a slave that defends its master.

But but but... EFF lawyers wear Birkenstocks and (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47294191)

use their powers only for good. And they are backed by hackers - the smartest people in the world.

There is NOTHING wrong with this project. Rly.

Tor router (1)

Moflamby-2042 (919990) | about a month ago | (#47294377)

There are a lot of posts here about scary legal problems for the router owner. But what if the routers allowed access to the Internet only through Tor, for example, so the router owner is not in danger of what people do with it? Couldn't the router help by running an internal Tor relay to help that network too?

Who pays for my bandwidth? (1)

Guspaz (556486) | about a month ago | (#47294501)

I've got a reasonably fast connection (50 megs down, 10 megs up), but I have a cap. My ISP charges $0.50 per gig overage, who is going to pay for that when strangers pump my monthly bill up?

Run it all through Tor? (1)

Tool Man (9826) | about a month ago | (#47294513)

I've had a FON device, and I think its main protection against malicious (illegal, stupid) use is that other users on the open FON channel are either authenticated FON users roaming to your access point or paid users who again aren't really anonymous.

What I was wondering though is whether each of these openwireless devices could also be set up as a Tor entry node for all of the free traffic going out that way? Think something like the Tails distro, where you don't record anything, and don't really want to either. Keep it somewhat bandwidth-friendly for the rest of your network, and worry less about what some anonymous user does with it.

Re:Run it all through Tor? (1)

Burz (138833) | about a month ago | (#47295017)

TAILS is an interesting suggestion, because it includes a general IP 'replacement' stack called I2P. And THAT is what the EFF should be encouraging people to spread as far and wide as possible: A P2P-routed, mesh-like, torrent-ready, anonymized network connection that isn't limited to TCP and browser stuff. Its even got secure decentralized messaging (also inspired by bittorrent as it uses DHT), so no more Tormail type incidents.

I almost feel like the current generation of network experts, even people like Jacob Applebaum and Bruce Schneier, are rooted in a hopelessly outdated vision of network privacy. They both advocate that the end user not only setup Tor, but also fend for their own privacy with each application's own security scheme. Instead, they could just tell people, "You can reach me on I2P; Avoid Windows; And encrypt your HD". What they offer now is more like a recipe for a nervous breakdown; They want to maintain their Tech Ninja image, so they keep spouting a dizzying array of jargon relating to "solutions" that only solve for one layer.

Offer a version of network access that is general-purpose, is anonymous/private by default, where people can choose how much of their real identity they want to associate with the virtual one.

I do this as EFF has asked before for others to it (1)

Trax3001BBS (2368736) | about a month ago | (#47294823)

I've seen 34 people (connections once), it all works fine until you can feel something odd, as which time I'll shut down my HotSpot, for a few days.

I do help many people (34 mayhaps) as it's always being used, and I noticed cars parked across the street or out of the way.

Yes I run a HotSpot as per EFF, yet will shut it down in a heart beat if it just feels funny (my connection).

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