Pasco man used stolen Wi-Fi to make bomb threats

Reminder to secure internet connections
Posted at 5:22 PM, Apr 24, 2017

Walter Haider is having a frustrating time making sure no one else uses his Wi-Fi to commit a crime.

“I’ll just unplug the router and that’s it,” he said outside his Moon Lake home Monday.

“But then you won’t have internet will you?”asked reporter Erik Waxler. 

“When I need it I’ll plug it back in,” he replied.

Investigators said over the weekend, neighbor Terrance Upham used Haider’s internet connection to send out bomb threats on Twitter.

Those threats said there were pipe bombs around the Pasco government building and they would go off when deputies responded “killing many.”

Upham’s Twitter page is also loaded with racial slurs and anti-government ramblings.

Deputies said Upham was parked outside Haider’s house and was able to use his Wi-Fi because Haider’s router didn’t have a password.

“They basically traced his bomb threats back to your house?” asked Waxler.

“Yea! Because of my Linksys router,” Haider said.

Haider said he’s trying to figure out how to secure his internet, but the router company won’t help unless he buys a $40 service plan.

“I can spend 30 more dollars and get a brand new one,” he said.

“You’ll be surprised how many people have their Wi-Fi open,” said Detective Michael Rose with the Pasco Sheriff’s Office.

Rosa said everyone should double check to make sure they are password protected.

“We’ve had people download child pornography from open Wi-Fi. This particular person was making threats to multiple agencies within the state of Florida,” Rosa said.

Experts said along with encrypting your Wi-Fi with a password you can also set your router so others won’t even see your wireless network.

Some people give their Wi-Fi an ominous name like FBISurveillace or thievesbeware to scare poachers away.

Deputies said they didn’t find explosives or bomb making materials at Upham’s house. But they did find meth.

“He needed to go. End of story,” said Haider.