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A father in France is facing jail time and a fine after taking down a whole town's internet.
Reports claim he was using a signal jammer to stop his kids from going online late at night.
However, the jammer wasn't just blocking his signal — the entire town's internet service went down from midnight to 3am too.
A mobile carrier initially reported the strange signal drop to the Agence Nationale des Fréquences (ANFR), which is responsible for managing radio frequencies in France.
The agency found that a signal jammer belonging to the above-mentioned father was the cause of the issue, as per Bleeping Computer.
A signal jammer is a device that blocks internet by transmitting radio waves at the same frequency as mobile phones, which stops them connecting to cell towers and receiving signals.
In a report by the ANFR, it was revealed how the agency found the cause of the issue.
It stated, 'The explanation was disconcertingly simple: the jammer had been installed by the father of the family to prevent his teenagers from accessing the internet with their smartphone instead of falling asleep!
'His children had indeed become addicted to social networks and other applications, in particular since the confinement imposed due to the epidemic of Covid-19.'
The report said that the father 'decided that a jammer was the best solution to put an end to these excesses!'.
Although he did not mean to take down the entire town's internet, the use of a signal jammer is actually illegal in France.
The maximum penalty for the offence is a €30,000 fine and up to six months in jail.
The ANFR jammer is said to have been seized and is being held in the Public Prosecutor's office while it investigates the offence.
France isn't the only country that doesn't allow signal jammers, as using them to deliberately interfere with wireless signals is considered a crime in the UK.
According to Ofcom, the maximum penalty in the UK is two years’ imprisonment and/or an unlimited fine.
The devices are also illegal in the US, and those who use them can face hefty fines and jail time.
The FCC enforcement alert about jamming notes, 'The use or marketing of a jammer in the United States may subject you to substantial monetary penalties, seizure of the unlawful equipment, and criminal sanctions including imprisonment.'
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