Data Hogs Sought by T-Mobile

T-Mobile doesnEUt mind being seen as generous; it just doesnEUt want to be taken advantage of. Company president and CEO John Legere (pictured) warned on Monday that it will start getting in touch with customers it thinks are using more wireless data than theyEUre entitled to and asking them to knock it off. In a blog post, Legere took aim at T-Mobile customers who he said are stealing data and abusing the companyEUs network.

"This week, I am taking aim at a select group of individuals who have actually been stealing data from T-Mobile," Legere wrote in a blog post. "If their activities are left unchecked their actions could eventually have a negative effect on the experience of honest T-Mobile customers."

With the purchase of a T-Mobile unlimited 4G LTE data plan from T-Mobile, customers get a set amount of free LTE to use for tethering. When that data gets used up, speeds are throttled, meaning that if customers want more data at full speed, they must pay for it.

According to Legere, though, some customers are using workarounds to claim more LTE tethered data, using rooted phones, apps that hide tether usage or code written to mask activity. Legere referred to such users as "clever hackers who are willfully stealing for their own selfish gain."

Bad Apples

When we reached Atlanta-based tech analyst Jeff Kagan, he said T-Mobile should be commended for nipping a genuine problem in the bud.

"A few bad apples can spoil things for the whole bunch," he says. "I think Legere and T-Mobile show real guts taking on this sour slice of industry users. We don't like to take on troublemakers, but that means they continue to grow."

Only about 3,000 of T-MobileEUs 59 million customers are using the workarounds referred to by Legere. But those who are doing so are...

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