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The Courts The Internet Your Rights Online

Man Convicted For Helping Thousands Steal Internet Access 378

Posted by samzenpus
from the free-web dept.
angry tapir writes "An Oregon man has been convicted of seven courts of wire fraud for helping thousands of people steal Internet service. Ryan Harris, 26, of Redmond, Oregon, was convicted by a jury in U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts. He faces a prison term of up to 20 years and a fine of up to $250,000 on each of the seven counts."
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Man Convicted For Helping Thousands Steal Internet Access

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  • Re:hrm (Score:4, Informative)

    by siddesu (698447) on Monday March 05, 2012 @02:27AM (#39245069)
    Get your terminology right, please. There's no such thing as "intellectual property", there is a large body of laws and regulations that pertain to patents, trademarks, copyright and other related rights and mostly create various monopolies. "Intellectual property" is a WIPO marketing term for the weak-minded.
  • Re:Bad design (Score:5, Informative)

    by SuricouRaven (1897204) on Monday March 05, 2012 @02:38AM (#39245103)
    Worse, actually. He was impersonating modems using sniffed MAC addresses, which is only possible if the network is running without encryption - a feature that should be easily supported by DOCSIS (BPI has been in there since version 1.0), if the ISP were willing to fork out for the equipment. Coax is a shared medium, which means that every customer's data was being sent to every other customer on that segment, in cleartext - the only thing to stop someone from sniffing all the facebook accounts, emails, MMORPG logins and other non-SSL data they could desire would be the firewall in their modems, which is easily broken with a hacked firmware. That's a massive security worry right there - the ISP were lucky he only exploited it for theft of service, rather than sniffing all traffic and selling details to scammers who might use it for ID theft, spam and the looting of World of Warcraft accounts.
  • Re:hrm (Score:5, Informative)

    by gomiam (587421) on Monday March 05, 2012 @03:11AM (#39245253)
    Obvious troll, but I'll bite: the bits that you receive through my connection detract from the bits that I can receive through my connection for bandwidth is a physical world entity.

    OTOH, the bits that you copy from me don't disappear from my hard disk by your copying, for information is being a virtual world entity.

  • by ByOhTek (1181381) on Monday March 05, 2012 @05:59AM (#39245861) Journal

    The loan reps aren't exactly blameless either.

    When I bought my places ($100k-$150k range), the first loan place I went to, the guy I talked to tried to convince me to get a more expensive house (you are approved for up to $350k! You should look at something nicer!)

    I would *not* be able to pay the mortgage on such a house, let alone cover food and utilities. He didn't care, they were just going to sell the loan to some other company, they would make their money, he'd get his commission.

    Glad I went with another company. That was obnoxious.

  • by fearofcarpet (654438) on Monday March 05, 2012 @07:20AM (#39246205)

    He didn't care, they were just going to sell the loan to some other company, they would make their money, he'd get his commission.

    You nicely summarized the root cause of the collapse of housing markets across the US. The banks thought that, by chopping up mortgages and combining them with other securities, the resulting CDOs had less risk because it was spread around and since the cost of each tranche was proportional to the risk, and therefore the yield, everyone understood the risks involved. Of course that created a profit motive to create as many mortgages as possible--and the riskier the better because the risk magically disappeared once sliced up and repackaged. Opportunists climbed into cheap suits and starting fly-by-night mortgage brokerages, assembling teams of sleazy salespeople to push bad loans. By the time the mortgages went sour, everyone involved in the transaction had taken their profit but, thanks to deregulated banking, those profits were basically paid out of the savings accounts of the very same people getting the bad mortgages. And since all the banks merged into giant mega-banks that snatched up bad debt with your money, they were "too big to fail." But don't worry, they bought "insurance" against it in the form of credit default swaps so that the government wouldn't have to bail them out. Except that the "insurance companies" were also banks and didn't have nearly enough cash to pay out, so the government bailed them out, including the third parties that were buying credit default swaps on CDOs that they didn't even own.

    So everyone made money--from the mortgage bundlers all the way up to the CEOs of the giant banks--no matter if they succeeded, failed, or wrecked the global economy in the process. And to get the economy going again, the Fed started loaning out money at %0.01 interest so the banks could turn around and lend it back to Treasury at 3% (and pay back the bailout after dumping their bad assets); it's socialism for banks, and "free markets" and personal responsibility for the rest of us. Now we have a mountain of government debt and a generation of college-educated young people entering a stagnated economy with student loans accrued during the boom-times. I guess that is what happens when you create a system in which you can flip someone's livelihood for a profit without taking on any risk or responsibility.

    ...but this guy goes to jail for 20 years for scamming cable companies.

  • Meanwhile... (Score:5, Informative)

    by Tasha26 (1613349) on Monday March 05, 2012 @07:38AM (#39246293) Homepage

    prison term of up to 20 years and a fine of up to US$250,000

    ...the real criminals in the banking and mortgage industry got away scoff free even after they caused damages in the trillions. Is the law blind?

  • by Taty'sEyes (2373326) <admin@eyesofodessa.com> on Monday March 05, 2012 @10:02AM (#39247563) Homepage
    No he is not a "life long Republican." He is a libertarian Republican and ran for president as a Libertarian in the past. He does kowtow the party line of the Republicans... of the early 1900's.
  • by andyteleco (1090569) on Monday March 05, 2012 @12:10PM (#39249695)
    I remember that when I lived in France, I wanted to get a loan for a car and the guy in the shop asked me how much money I made and how much rent I paid per month, and if I had any other fix expenses.

    He later told me that the French law forbids banks to give you any loan which will make you get into a situation of paying more than 33% of your salary for loans+rent. So if you earn 3000â a month and pay 500â rent you will only get a loan which has a maximum repayment of 500â per month.

    This was back in 2005. Now we can understand why France hasn't suffered the same real estate crisis as the greatest part of the rest of the world.

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