Ignorance is not an excuse
Published: Tuesday 2005-03-08.
Aftonbladet writes that courts say that computer users have themselves to blame when their modems get “hijacked” and are set up to call expensive pay or long distance calls. I am inclined to agree with the court’s interpretation of at least this case, it cannot be the telephone operator that is to blame for that the modem was hi-jacked. Perhaps that some kind of warning bell should have chimed at the operator when a customer’s phoning habits suddenly change and the telephone bill skyrockets, but it has to be the customer that in the end is the one that is responsible for keeping computer and modem safe.
If there is anyone that should be taken to court it is the modem hijackers (and not the other way around), although it often is difficult finding the responsible people, the ones that are active in this “line of business” are for apparent reasons rather shady and do not stop easily to by all available means stay that way.
If you are still using a dial-up connection, is running Windows and is using Internet Explorer you should protect yourself. The Swedish Consumer Agency offers Bluffstopparen (“Fraud Stopper”, Swedish only) for free to users of modern versions of Windows. Other than that you should as always be careful, not answer Yes to weird dialogues that show up unless you are completely sure, and to switch to a safer web browser.