Thou shalt not use thy neighbor’s WiFi: Dubai authorities issue fatwa

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In Dubai, it is against Islamic Law to covet your neighbor’s WiFi.

479Dubai’s Islamic Affairs and Charitable Activities Department recently published a fatwa (Muslim religious ruling) forbidding Muslims from using open WiFi networks without permission, the Associated Press reported.

The department’s official statement says “there is nothing wrong in using the line if your neighbors allow you to do so, but if they don’t allow you, you may not use it.”

The Islamic Affairs and Charitable Activities Department is tasked with dealing with the public on religious matters, and covers everything from prayers to cosmetic surgery and illegal downloads.

Last summer, tourists in Dubai were warned not to send messages with offensive language over Whatsapp, or they could face a $64,000 fine and even time in prison.

The new rules went into effect following the re-trial of a man who was fined nearly $750 by the UAE’s Federal Supreme Court for swearing at a colleague over the social app.