Feeds

Police collar kid for Wi-Fi pinching

Teen arrested for camping on next door's net

SANS - Survey on application security programs

Exclusive Lincolnshire police have arrested a 16-year-old suspected of hacking into next door's Wi-Fi after his neighbour complained the connection was running a bit slow.

Police arrived at the lad's house after nine o'clock on Sunday October 5, and arrested him under the Computer Misuse Act 1990. The youngster was then questioned until quarter to twelve, at which point his father refused a police caution. Ten days later a letter was pushed through the boy's door cancelling his bail and stating that no additional action would be taken. There was no further explanation, leading the father to file a complaint for unlawful arrest and detention.

The lad in question got himself a Wi-Fi-equipped laptop back in April, and uses other Wi-Fi equipment on his own network, but admits he might have accidentally clicked on the wrong connection when logging on. A quick look around reveals seven networks in the area, two of which remain unsecured even now.

Apparently the neighbour has had some trouble getting online lately, and a friend noticed the neighbour's boy's laptop had been allocated an IP address by the DHCP server - the lad isn't technically up to changing his computer's name, which had been set up by his dad to be his own.

The friend reckoned the boy not only hacked the access point, but also "removed the encryption" protecting the connection - though why a hacker would want to remove a cracked encryption isn't clear.

If the network was hacked then a crime has been committed, but our friends over at Out-Law.com confirm that connecting to the wrong network by mistake is not a crime, and the fact that the lad had his own Wi-Fi connection available would lend credence to that argument.

It would be plausible that the neighbour's friend, trying to explain the outages in connectivity, noticed the DHCP allocation and so assumed hacking activity, assuming that any lack of security must be attributable to a 'hacker' disabling it.

Police sources tell us that normal procedure would be to check in with their own Computer Crime unit, before contacting the boy's parents to arrange an interview if a crime had been committed.

But in this instance, the coppers decided to turn up on a Sunday night, arrest the boy and offer him a formal caution - providing grounds for a complaint of unlawful arrest and detention given his age.

The youngster's father has now filed an official complaint and sent the laptop off for forensic analysis. He's also waiting for copies of the complainant's statements, so he can see exactly what the neighbour and his friend told police before they decided on the Sunday night raid. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Putin tells Snowden: Russia conducts no US-style mass surveillance
Gov't is too broke for that, Russian prez says
One year on: diplomatic fail as Chinese APT gangs get back to work
Mandiant says past 12 months shows Beijing won't call off its hackers
Record labels sue Pandora over vintage song royalties
Companies want payout on recordings made before 1972
Edward Snowden on his Putin TV appearance: 'Why all the criticism?'
Denies Q&A cameo was meant to slam US, big-up Russia
Lavabit loses contempt of court appeal over protecting Snowden, customers
Judges rule complaints about government power are too little, too late
MtGox chief Karpelès refuses to come to US for g-men's grilling
Bitcoin baron says he needs another lawyer for FinCEN chat
Don't let no-hire pact suit witnesses call Steve Jobs a bullyboy, plead Apple and Google
'Irrelevant' character evidence should be excluded – lawyers
EFF: Feds plan to put 52 MILLION FACES into recognition database
System would identify faces as part of biometrics collection
Ex-Tony Blair adviser is new top boss at UK spy-hive GCHQ
Robert Hannigan to replace Sir Iain Lobban in the autumn
Judge halts spread of zombie Nortel patents to Texas in Google trial
Epic Rockstar patent war to be waged in California
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.