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Looking for Advice: Wireless sharing
The Dime
wilowisp
The new neighbor has asked to get in on our wireless internet, offering to pay for some of the cost. My initial reaction is "sure, why not?"

Then I think of words like "security" and "bandwidth" - words that I have no expertise in - and suddenly I'm thinking it's not so good an idea?

Currently we actually have Comcast landline internet, hardwired to both our desktops. We have a wireless router, though, and that connects to the Wii (mainly for me) and the Boy's school laptop.

Thoughts? Suggestions? Warnings? Appreciated.

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Yeah, that's a tricky one - if they start doing something illegal and someone noticed, you guys would get the flack. But, on the other hand, the majority of people on the internet aren't really savvy enough to do enough illegal stuff to get noticed. (And I spent several years as an internet pirate on my landlord's wireless, and didn't hear anything, so ...) So, I guess it depends on how well you know the new neighbor, or what kind of feeling you get from them. If it were me, though, I'd probably say no.

Unless I knew the person I probably wouldn't go for it, for the same two reasons seimaisin mentioned, and also because of bandwidth. This doesn't matter to a lot of people, but since I stream music and play MMOs, it does matter to me. I've had bandwidth issues with a former roommate who spent a lot of time uploading and downloading video files. It wouldn't have been a big deal if all I (or she) had been doing was browsing the internet, so it might not necessarily be an issue for you.

And yeah, if they were doing anything illegal you could very well get dragged down by it. You could make it a verbal agreement and claim you didn't know what they were doing, but that seems to be getting kind of complicated for $20 or $30 a month (or whatever).

It would probably be fine, but it's also probably not worth the risk. Comcast might also have some policy about sharing wireless or bandwidth caps or something which could get you cutoff or fined in addition to the legal risk.

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