I have received a notice from my provider, Suddenlink about illegal use of my home Internet. I have freely given my server and password information to guests to use - but no more! My service provider has issued a warning and offered 2 specific dates where illegal copies of movies (not pornographic, unless you consider Kung Fu Panda pornographic!!) were downloaded when 2 different guests stayed in my Airbnb room.
Beginning today, I will add a warning to my House Rules and posted in the room, but I also have one other idea. I think I will not offer the WiFi password until guests confirm they understand the house policy. I am NOT a fan of many restrictions on my guests and doing anything that could be construed as negative, but I am very concerned about the illegal use of my home Internet.
Please share your thoughts on this and your experience! Thanks all you wonderful hosts out there!
There's probably someone out in the community who can help you put a "whitelist" of sites on your routers that won't allow torrents, etc through. It's not me, but I believe this sort of filter exists. Maybe under "parental controls"? You may be able to limit the sites, or limit the amount those users can download (also known as throttling), which would deter them. Sorry I don't have more concrete advice, just ideas.
This seems to be an unpleasant issue for hosts occasionally.
I don't have any experience with it myself but remember there recently having been a thread with tips and comments on this theme as well as some in the past.
I used the search function on the community and got these posts that you might want to take the time to look at:
We take a similar precaution - we have a warning in the House Rules section of our properties and NEVER give out passwords. I think you are wise to do similar.
I personally feel this NEED for FREE WIFI EVERYWHERE you venture is getting out of hand. Sure, paying your bills is easier, however..
Millennials do not know how to unplug, unwind without a phone or laptop attached to their extremity...or sit together, but while staring at their phones. Sorry, rant over.
@Mary @Linda @Andrea......Mary I can't speak for the United States but here in Australia torrent sites have been blocked and if you try to access a torrent site here you will be re-directed to a gambling site or similar.
Having said that I think we are possibly a bit more fortunate here with our providers. I am on a $60.00 per month plan which gives me unlimited monthly download access plus totally free home phone and calls to anywhere in the world through a VoIP service. That combined with out 2 mobiles phones mean our combined internet/communication bill comes to less than $100.00au per month.
Most guests these days would consider it to be the end of the civilised world if WiFi access was not available so I freely give the password to incoming guests....and I must admit I did have concerns about pirate movie downloads but now that Torrent sites have been blocked I feel much more comfortable.
I have heard that it happens but I find it incredible that an internet provider will single you out with a specific date and download for a 'roasting'!!
I am ignorant about these things so don't chastise me for something that may be obvious but, is it possible for you to set up an allowance limit with your provider per 15 minutes or something like that so that illegal downloading can be nipped in the bud!
I too just experienced guests downloading illegal cable tv shows and violating copyright laws via BIT Torrent over my internet/wifi in my guest house. This can carry a financial fine/penalty and I assume that I would be liable.
I am adding this to my house rules, as well as putting a notice in my house binder that I keep on the premises.
My guest house wifi is separate from my home wifi, and I can turn it off if they violate this rule.
Hi all, I'm a bit late to the game but for anyone still looking for a solution its worth using OpenDNS, and its free. It will block all the illegal and nasty stuff :)
When I had to guests who illegally downloaded content, I was notified within hours by my Internet provider. I then spoke directly with the guests and ask them to stop. I then tightened the controls on my Internet, as well as updated my house rules.
I also received a notice from my internet provider (AT&T) that copyright infringement may have taken place on my Internet. I used to freely provide my wifi password; i wonder now if that is wise. Maybe I will be more selective in my hosting.