For those of you who are sick of neighbors cutting into your internet, this fatwa is just the thing for you.
Scholars at the Department of Islamic Affairs and Charitable Activities in the United Arab Emirates’ most populous city, Dubai, have issued a declaration, or “fatwa” banning the illegal use of internet Wi-Fi.
A fatwa is a shariah-compliant rule of law and since the UAE follows Islamic theocracy, it is obligatory for all residents to follow it.
The latest religious edict came in the wake of a person asking on the department’s website whether it was permissible to use other people’s Wi-Fi without their permission.
The department’s response was clear on the “modern fatwa” section of the website: “It is not allowed for people to use what belongs to others without payment or without their permission. Therefore, the internet should be used only after subscribing for the service.”
Additionally, they said, jumping onto someone else’s network decreases the speed of internet, which affects the service for the person who is paying good money for it.
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“Whether the W-iFi service owner is affected or not, it is haram or prohibited to avail the service without his or her consent," Ali Mashael, chief mufti at the Department of Islamic Affairs and Charitable Activities in Dubai, added.
The proclamation also states that: "There is nothing wrong in using the line if your neighbor allows you to do so, but if they'd don't allow you, you may not use it."
The fatwa does not include open internet access available in public places.
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