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Suspect someone is using my broadband!

maryrose88
Newbie
Posts: 3
Registered: 03-06-2013

Suspect someone is using my broadband!

Please help! My broadband usage allowance keep decreasing even I am not even near my computer, or games or TV. Is it possible that someone used my data even it is password protected? What can I do apart from switch off my router.
Any suggestion would be gratefully appreciated!
Embarrassed
16 REPLIES
Community Veteran
Posts: 38,460
Thanks: 1,027
Fixes: 62
Registered: 15-06-2007

Re: Suspect someone is using my broadband!

what is the typical amount of usage you are seeing when you are not using it
Infinity
Pro
Posts: 5,831
Thanks: 214
Fixes: 2
Registered: 19-06-2011

Re: Suspect someone is using my broadband!

Disable wifi on the router and use an Ethernet cable for a while, if possible, does it still happen ?
Or even just disable wifi overnight etc ?
maryrose88
Newbie
Posts: 3
Registered: 03-06-2013

Re: Suspect someone is using my broadband!

Thanks. Guys. My usage allowance for this month has almost used up within last 5 days. Previously, I always had some left at the end of the Billing period. I have switched the router off to prevent paying over the allowance.
Will try to use the cable.
bradw
Grafter
Posts: 105
Registered: 21-05-2013

Re: Suspect someone is using my broadband!

Could also be some sort of virus on your computer using up your connection (part of a botnet)
Make sure you have an up-to-date antivirus
Community Veteran
Posts: 5,472
Thanks: 292
Fixes: 4
Registered: 11-08-2007

Re: Suspect someone is using my broadband!

So that you don't start paying for any unwanted additional usage beyond your monthly allowance, you should check that your account is set to prevent you paying for any overspend caused by this unexpected usage !
First login to your account using this link - https://portal.plus.net/data_transfer_watch/
and set it so that looks like -
Quote
Maximum extra monthly spend:    £0.00

Then navigate to this page - https://portal.plus.net/products/upgrade/change_data_transfer.html
and ensure that it says -
Quote
You are currently: Fixed cost

if it says "Pay As You Go", then change the setting to make it "Fixed cost".
Community Veteran
Posts: 19,100
Thanks: 437
Fixes: 21
Registered: 31-08-2007

Re: Suspect someone is using my broadband!

maryrose88, you haven't given or sold an old modem/router to anyone by any chance?
maryrose88
Newbie
Posts: 3
Registered: 03-06-2013

Re: Suspect someone is using my broadband!

Anotherone
No, just gone wireless with plusnet.

Thanks for the suggestion, purleigh. Done the first part and my contract is fixed monthly payment. Very helpful.

Bradw, got Firefox and update regularly, shouldn't it protect my computer? Disappointed if the defenses not working properly!
Community Veteran
Posts: 38,460
Thanks: 1,027
Fixes: 62
Registered: 15-06-2007

Re: Suspect someone is using my broadband!

Firefox protects nothing
You need an anti virus installed - assuming you are using a version of windows
Community Veteran
Posts: 19,100
Thanks: 437
Fixes: 21
Registered: 31-08-2007

Re: Suspect someone is using my broadband!

Firefox by itself won't protect you. I'd install one of the Free Antivirus programs that have a good reputation such as Avast Free click the Download now button at the top of the page or try AVG Free click this Free Version link this will take you to another page suggesting you download the Trial version of Internet Security  - don't - scroll to the bottomof the page and click on the Dowload for AVG Free 2013 which should take you here click on the Download Now but not on the Start Download on the next page that comes up.You'll get a pop-up box prompting you to Save or Run the AVG file. Save it and then run it.
Make sure you don't have boxes ticked that will install additional items such as toolbars and the like (with either AV).
You will probably find that your computer boot time is slowed as they check files as the machine is booting.
mikehiow
Grafter
Posts: 137
Registered: 17-03-2013

Re: Suspect someone is using my broadband!

Quote from: maryrose88
Please help! My broadband usage allowance keep decreasing even I am not even near my computer, or games or TV. Is it possible that someone used my data even it is password protected? What can I do apart from switch off my router.
Any suggestion would be gratefully appreciated!
Embarrassed

A very easy way to tell is to login to your router and find something along the lines of "Device List" or "DHCP Leases". If someone is using your connection, it may very well appear in there (although it's not guaranteed).
Regardless of the result of that, I'd change your Wifi settings. Ensure it's set to WPA2 and choose a nice secure password that contains lots of fancy characters, upper and lower case and that isn't based on a real word.
Community Veteran
Posts: 5,472
Thanks: 292
Fixes: 4
Registered: 11-08-2007

Re: Suspect someone is using my broadband!

I would also suggest changing your Plusnet account password as well.
Login to you account and make the password change here - https://portal.plus.net/my.html?action=change_password&s=0
Then logout from your Plusnet account.
Login to your account again, just to make sure your new password is working immediately.
Then login to the ADSL setup page in your modem/router and change the PPPoA login password to match.
Restart your modem/router, and it should all come back working but using a new password.
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,419
Thanks: 531
Fixes: 48
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Suspect someone is using my broadband!

I suspect that it's not the case here, but there was an instance over on the IDNetters forums recently of someone likely being the subject of a DNS Amplification DDos attack, which consumed a significant amount of bandwidth.
Quote
"DNS amplification" means that the affected routers were not discriminating as to where the DNS lookup was coming from, so allowed traffic coming from the external interface to use the router as a DNS forwarder.
The way the attack works is that the DNS lookup is sent to the router using a forged "victim" sender IP address. The "victim" then gets deluged with response traffic from all over the world which, because DNS responses are normal and expected traffic, is very difficult to block.

Community Veteran
Posts: 5,472
Thanks: 292
Fixes: 4
Registered: 11-08-2007

Re: Suspect someone is using my broadband!

In that case it would be worth (again !) logging into your Plusnet account using this link - https://portal.plus.net/my.html?action=firewall
and setting the Plusnet Broadband Firewall to "HIGH", click on "UPDATE SETTINGS", wait a few minutes and then restart your modem/router.
This will prevent almost all unwanted external DNS (and other) requests, and eliminate the chances of a DDoS attack.
Community Gaffer
Community Gaffer
Posts: 13,161
Thanks: 932
Fixes: 77
Registered: 04-04-2007

Re: Suspect someone is using my broadband!

Did you do anything out of the ordinary Sunday evening? That seems to be when the majority of data was consumed.

Bob Pullen
Plusnet Product Team
If I've been helpful then please give thanks ⤵