Six people agreed to part with their first born child as a trade-off for free WiFi, as part of a social experiment to highlight the dangers of public Internet.
A WiFi hotspot was set up in London and was free to access provided that the lengthy terms and conditions were agreed to. Among the usual conditions was a “deliberately ridiculous" term, which stated that the individual using the service was prepared to "render up their eldest child for the duration of eternity."
The report, titled “Tainted Love: How Wi-Fi Betrays Us” by security and privacy company F-Secure was published on Monday and revealed the results of the study. This free WiFi came with another catch; it was able to collect the text of emails they sent, the email addresses of the sender and recipient, and the password of the sender.
The report concluded: "Our results illustrate the very real problem of the modern world which is that - while massively dependent on the technology - the population is unaware of its capabilities for surveillance and intrusion into their lives. The problem is that people implicitly trust their technology and are not aware of the implications of that trust.”
So, if you are going to take advantage of free WiFi, make sure you read the terms and conditions, and try to avoid logging into any service or sending important e-mails. Others who provide trojanised hotspots may not be so kind.