In times like these, giving your neighbor temporary access to your Wi-Fi network seems like a neighborly thing to do and may even sound like an opportunity to save a few extra bucks for both families. But sharing your Wi-Fi might not be as good of an idea as it sounds like. Before you hand over the keys to your Wi-Fi, here are five reasons why sharing your internet service with your neighbor is a bad idea.
The list holds true no matter who you have as your internet provider – whether it be Verizon, HughesNet Internet, AT&T, or MetroNet.
They Could Accidentally Infect Your Devices With Malware
No matter how much you trust your neighbors, you have no real way of knowing how serious they are about device security.
The reality is they could completely neglect using antivirus software or updating their devices. For all you know all their internet-enabled devices could be infected to the brim with malware. When they connect to your Wi-Fi, their malware will spread to your devices like wildfire.
In this scenario, we seriously recommend that you do not share your Wi-Fi with your neighbors whether you know their habits or not. The security risk is far too great for your family to take the risk.
They Could Access Files & Photos Open To The Whole Network
Do you have shared music, movies or even photos open to your whole network? How about an external hard drive or printer?
When your neighbor connects to your Wi-Fi network, they’ll be able to see all of that. You might not mind sharing music or movies with your neighbor, but what about your personal files, work data, and photos? They might not being the nosey prying eye type or even being technically savvy enough to figure out how to look at it all, but why take the risk?
In this scenario, we recommend that you do not share your Wi-Fi to keep your information safe. Unfortunately, as much as you think you know someone, you might not and it’s not worth the risk or stress.
They Could Get You In Legal Trouble
The unfortunate reality is you don’t know what your neighbor will be doing online. In the worst-case scenario, they could be doing things that are illegal and could find you in legal trouble for their actions.
Activities like downloading free music or movies that are not intended to be or any other illegal activity online can be traced back to your internet connection and which you would be held liable for since your name is on the bill.
Although sharing your internet connection in this instance would be all about trust between you and your neighbor, it’s best to avoid the situation. You don’t want to find yourself in legal hot water because you never truly know what someone is up to behind closed doors no matter how much you think you trust them.
They Could Slow Your Network Down
Allowing your neighbor to use your Wi-Fi connection may slow down your Wi-Fi for you, your family and everyone connected to it. In this scenario, you don’t know what your neighbor would be doing online. For all you know they can be a total bandwidth hog and slow your Wi-Fi down to a crawl.
Sharing your Wi-Fi with your neighbor when they’ve hit unfortunate times might sound like the neighborly thing to do, however we recommend that you do not put yourself in this position.
You don’t want to put yourself at risk for a potential conflict with someone you may live next to for many years to come.
They Could Cost You Extra Money
Does your internet plan come with a data cap?
If so, sharing your Wi-Fi with your neighbor can cause you to go over your data limit. Doing the neighborly thing and sharing your internet doesn’t mean they’ll appreciate it or will be invested in avoiding overage charges on your behalf. In this scenario, your neighbor could seriously crank up your monthly bill without even realizing it.
Even if you do realize you’re cutting it short on data before your billing cycle comes to a close, do you really want to have that difficult conversation? Probably not.
We recommend avoiding sharing your internet even if you have a 50/50 split agreement with them. They won’t appreciate the rate increase on your shared internet deal and don’t have any real incentive to pony up the extra dough.