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Old 26.08.2014, 14:04
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Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

Hi All,

I just read a cablecom media release about Wi-Free, the newesh expansion of free wifi offer from cablecom, covering supposedly all of Switzerland come October.

Now everything looks nice and handy until one realizes that they will use the customer's wifi unites to broadcast the new wifi signal, again not a big issue! although the discussion can go on forever over how secure is the customer's private/home network and whether or not hackers can have a field day with this type of setup.

However what I find worrying is the fact that by default the customer's unit is automatically enabled to broadcast Wi-Free signal without the customer's approval. those of you with cablecom should have a look at their account (My upc> My products > Wi-Free).

I know it is their equipment but I am paying the rent/service fee hence it should be under my control until I ask for help or request otherwise or am I wrong here?

For people in the know & experience & simply have an opinion. What are your thoughts?

Thanks
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  #2  
Old 26.08.2014, 14:10
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

well since they raise the price of the service without asking you, opening up wifi without asking doesn't seem all that surprising.
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Old 26.08.2014, 14:16
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

When I got their email about that Wi-free I totally missed that it now was a bu default option! must have been in small characters somewhere...

Off I go to check on my account...
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Old 26.08.2014, 14:24
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

Separate network: privacy and data protection guaranteed
From mid-September to the beginning of October, the Swiss subsidiary of Liberty Global will extend Wi-Free to the whole of Switzerland. By means of a software update, Wi-Free will be added to upc cablecom Internet customers’ WLAN modems. Following registration via the My UPC customer portal and initial login using a mobile device, this device will then connect to Wi-Free automatically in the future.


Where is the problem? Cablecom will enable every modem to receive your encoded mobile device. It costs you nothing, and is secure.
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Old 26.08.2014, 14:27
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

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well since they raise the price of the service without asking you, opening up wifi without asking doesn't seem all that surprising.
At least that option (price raise) is going through the price regulator for approval and it is still under invistigation. The Wi-Free on the other hand is not even announced to all.

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When I got their email about that Wi-free I totally missed that it now was a bu default option! must have been in small characters somewhere...
You got an email!! consider yourself lucky, A lot did not get anything.
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Old 26.08.2014, 14:28
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

No email, it's enabled, I don't see any other SSID.

But if it's not eating my bandwidth then I don't care. I never trusted the UPC CPE so have my own router and run the modem in bridge mode. Which is maybe why I don't get another SSID.

I would expect the thing to run in its own VLAN and not in your NATted IP range.
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Old 26.08.2014, 14:33
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

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encoded mobile device. It costs you nothing, and is secure.
By encoded they mean a your account login and a min 6 letter/number password!

Well, the cost is an arguable point, the basic fee is going up by 90Rb, Not a lot I know but multiply that by 2 million customer and it adds up.

Secure is again an arguable topic, there is actually a simple app to break such security measure on router's secondary/free/guest wifi!
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Old 26.08.2014, 14:38
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

An interesting, if scary idea which opens both security and bandwidth questions.

I expect Swisscom will do the same.

Although I have been a cablecom customer since it was called Swissonline and was dial up, I don't have a CC wireless router. I bought my own as initially CC only supplied a cable modem...
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Old 26.08.2014, 14:39
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

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No email, it's enabled, I don't see any other SSID.

But if it's not eating my bandwidth then I don't care. I never trusted the UPC CPE so have my own router and run the modem in bridge mode. Which is maybe why I don't get another SSID.
The bandwidth is limited to (download: 5 Mbit/s, upload: 500 kbit/s).
some routers have not as yet received the updated software/firmware hence the broadcast is not on as yet.

Good point re bridge mode, not sure how it will work then. Will the router still broadcast the Wi-Free signal in the background and bridge at the same time or just as Bridge.
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Old 26.08.2014, 15:11
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

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Where is the problem? Cablecom will enable every modem to receive your encoded mobile device. It costs you nothing, and is secure.
Actually it doesn't cost their customers "nothing", it costs them in terms of reduced available bandwidth and increased electricity costs (albeit the latter probably being minimal).

And as for secure... you're kidding, right?
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Old 26.08.2014, 15:48
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

Swisscom already do the same.

It's VLANs set on the device, you can go VLAN hopping but it's not easy.

And they will use provisioning and QoS to ensure that you advertised speed is what you might get (remember these domestic services are more best-effort than guaranteed)
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Old 26.08.2014, 20:37
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

all I need to know: how can I turn it off?
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Old 26.08.2014, 20:50
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

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all I need to know: how can I turn it off?
From the UPC support pages:

Quote:
Wi-Free will be progressively activated from mid-September. From the beginning of October, Wi-Free will be available throughout Switzerland. You can already register for or deactivate Wi-Free via My UPC.
Your "My UPC" can be found here
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Old 26.08.2014, 20:53
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

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From the UPC support pages:



Your "My UPC" can be found here


I don't want to register it - I want to make sure it's never turned on in the first place. No need for more EM radiation in my house - we have a 5-month old here.
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Old 26.08.2014, 20:56
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

I got that , The page quoted above also says:

Quote:
or deactivate Wi-Free via My UPC.
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Old 26.08.2014, 21:02
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

If you read cablecom site it says:
The “shareconomy” principle


The more people who participate, the more each individual benefits. If you authorise the second Wi-Free network on your modem, you have free Internet access wherever anyone else authorises it. Through the numerous upc cablecom customers, Wi-Free is available at numerous locations throughout Switzerland and is constantly expanding – with every new customer.

So if you share you benefit or vice versa.

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Hi All,

I just read a cablecom media release about Wi-Free, the newesh expansion of free wifi offer from cablecom, covering supposedly all of Switzerland come October.

Now everything looks nice and handy until one realizes that they will use the customer's wifi unites to broadcast the new wifi signal, again not a big issue! although the discussion can go on forever over how secure is the customer's private/home network and whether or not hackers can have a field day with this type of setup.

However what I find worrying is the fact that by default the customer's unit is automatically enabled to broadcast Wi-Free signal without the customer's approval. those of you with cablecom should have a look at their account (My upc> My products > Wi-Free).

I know it is their equipment but I am paying the rent/service fee hence it should be under my control until I ask for help or request otherwise or am I wrong here?

For people in the know & experience & simply have an opinion. What are your thoughts?

Thanks
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 26.08.2014, 21:03
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

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I got that , The page quoted above also says:
I just check out My UPC and (surprise, surprise), there's no option to disable it. The only thing it offers me is to change the password.
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Old 26.08.2014, 21:15
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

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If you read cablecom site it says:
The “shareconomy” principle


The more people who participate, the more each individual benefits. If you authorise the second Wi-Free network on your modem, you have free Internet access wherever anyone else authorises it. Through the numerous upc cablecom customers, Wi-Free is available at numerous locations throughout Switzerland and is constantly expanding – with every new customer.

So if you share you benefit or vice versa.
I don't profit as I close to never use public WLAN access points. I have 4G on my phone. I live in a rural area with a bunch of 80-year-olds as my only neighbours - I seriously doubt they'll profit from that Wi-Free crap. Other than adding more radiation and yet another useless WiFi AP, it does absolutely nothing for me.
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Old 26.08.2014, 21:19
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

The deactivate link was there for me, that is why I posted what I did above. Screen shot from a few seconds ago:

wi-free-cablecom-good-bad-upc.jpg
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Old 26.08.2014, 21:22
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Re: Wi-Free by Cablecom, the good, the bad and the ...

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The deactivate link was there for me, that is why I posted what I did above. Screen shot from a few seconds ago:

Attachment 86780
mine looks like this - no option do disable anything. It was already enabled when I first looked on that website. I've sent UPC support an e-mail, demanding to get it disabled.
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