Verizon Blocks Unauthorized Tethering Through Jailbreak Apps

Verizon Blocks Unauthorized Tethering Through Jailbreak Apps

Verizon has followed AT&T’s lead and taken measures to block customers from tethering their iPhone’s data connections illegally. Customers have long been using jailbreak apps to avoid their carrier’s additional monthly fee for tethering, but this method may no longer work if you’re signed up to AT&T or Verizon.

One of the main reasons to jailbreak the iPhone for me was to get my hands on some free tethering. Before my carrier began including tethering in certain plans at no extra charge, I had to pay an additional monthly fee in order to use my iPhone’s data connection on my iPad or my notebook. But with a number of handy jailbreak apps, you could get this functionality for free… until carriers began cracking down on illegal tethering.

AT&T got the ball rolling last week by informing customers on unlimited data plans that they would automatically be given a 2GB data cap if they tethered their devices illegally. Verizon has now followed suit and began redirecting customers who attempt to tether illegally to a Verizon webpage that allows them to add tethering to their plan quickly and easily.

While this may be frustrating for some users, a carrier crackdown on illegal tethering has seemed inevitable for some time. If you’re a Verizon jailbreak tetherer, though, there is some small hope: PDANet hides tethering from carriers pretty nicely.

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  • Theyseeyoutrollin

    That’s so stupid to me. Why do we have to tether through the carrier? Why do we have to pay them for everything? It’s still not illegal AT&T.

  • quietstorms

    It is illegal. You’re violating the TOS for you contract. Is it right? No.

    If carriers are going to force data caps then it shouldn’t matter how you use data. For those on unlimited, you couldn’t possibly expect that AT&T/Verizon would actually allow you to tether for unlimited GBs?

  • Barton Lynch

    I agree with you. but I wish I could tether with my extsting 2GB at no extra charge

  • djgrahamj

    Violating a TOS is not illegal.

  • djgrahamj

    This is ludicrous, let us use what we paid for however we see fit.

    DOWN WITH TETHERING FEES.

  • quietstorms

    Violating a contract is illegal. You can be taken to court and found guilty. A contract is held up by the law.

  • bluestater

    Violating a contract is not illegal.  It is can be handled in a civil court.  If you back out of buying a house, you can’t be sent to jail.

  • Michael S

    Tethered this morning via TetherMe .  Either it hides itself, or my monthly usage is low enough that they don’t care (not even 2GB).

  • Michael S

    Not true for me.
    Tethered this morning via TetherMe .  Either it hides itself, or my
    monthly usage is low enough that they don’t care (not even 2GB).

  • lsl31
  • MrPeabody2011

    Killian – how do you know that this statement is true when you say, “If you’re a Verizon jailbreak tetherer, though, there is some small hope: PDANet hides tethering from carriers pretty nicely.” Got anything to back that statement up? I think they’d track the amount of data used and well regardless of what app you are using your are caught. Gotcha suckers!

  • 011Bojan

    Luckily there is workaround. It seems dumb that you need to pay extra, if you already paid for “unlimited” plan.

    What’s the point, if you can’t use it the way you want. Fraudulent marketing!

  • quietstorms

    Incarceration has nothing to do with this. There have been precedents against a violation of contract. There have been cases where a contract has been too confusing where a court has ruled against the plaintiff. This is the only situation where a contract is voided. This is not the case with contracts and carriers. There has been enough precedence where you cannot tether or violate any other such terms. No court has ruled against this in recent years.

  • Chuck

    Well then buy yourself a cellular network and you can do what ever you want.

  • Mike Rathjen

    First of all, it’s a contractual dispute. Whether or not you violate a contract is a matter of *opinion*, and is thus disputable.

    As a result of this contractual dispute, even if you are found in the wrong, the government will not pursue you, will not enforce the contract, will not fine you, will not jail you, and you will not have a criminal record.

    If there is a dispute in a contract, one or more parties to the contract may take it to court. At court the judge will determine whether or not you violated the contract, consider mitigating circumstances, and determine outcomes such as restitution.

    If I were the judge and found someone to be in violation of the contract, I’d probably require restitution of back pay equal to the tethering fee times the number of months that tethering was used freely. I might reduce that somewhat based on mitigating circumstances.

    Still, even if found in violation of the contract, no law was broken.

    You seem to think that a contract dispute brought before a judge equals illegal for the losing party. This is far from the case. I might have a dispute with my neighbor about property lines and lose, it doesn’t mean anything was illegal. I might have a dispute with my wife and bring it before a court. Etc etc etc.

    Having a court rule against you in a civil dispute does not mean you broke the law. In fact, he might not even rule against you. He might find that there are mitigating circumstances, such as misleading advertising that implies something contradictory to the ultra-fineprint.

  • Jared Hocutt

    I agree with this. If it were still unlimited data, I could see the crackdown on illegal tethering, but with a data cap, you are already paying for that amount of data and it shouldn’t matter how it’s used.

  • Brandon Dillon

    That’s a really douche/troll thing to say.

  • Brandon Dillon

    It doesn’t matter how data you use. If they can’t prove that you’re using unauthorized tethering, they can’t legally do anything about it.

  • vikassaraswat

    T mobile is way to go.
    5 GB data with UL calling n texting for 89 and they have no problem you use mobile network to surf on your personal computer.
    Did I say they have micro sim now.I am ready to go to TMobile and guess what tmobile will credit you the early termination fee, we pay to AT&T.

    Tmobile CSR confirmed me that.

About the author

Killian BellKillian Bell is a staff writer based in the U.K. He has an interest in all things tech and also covers Android over at CultofAndroid.com. You can follow him on Twitter via @killianbell.

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