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XBox Live usage allowance and security

edjay

Standard Member
Hi AV Folks

I'm charged with assessing the damage from my sisters two lads on her broadband allowance, at the same time as finding out if there are any XBox Live or BT security issues us adults should be aware of.

The lads - 12 and 14 - are using up between 4 and 5Gigs a day; this includes all evening as well. A hard day at the controller can mean 12 to 16 hours each for them when they're not at school. They are also using the chat functions, which I presume is some kind of VOIP.

Serious question #1:

Is it possible for other gamers to keep using my sisters connection after her lads have given up for the night?

Serious question #2:

Is there any security measures that should be taken on the XBox or on the BT broadband router: By this I mean security measures that young lads possibly would not notice or perhaps not pay any attention to whilst they were setting it up? My sister is a one-button-wonder type, technology being a foreign language.

I've hunted for consistent data on gaming/chat usage as well, but not come up with very much really.

Much appreciated. :)
 

DJSigma

Banned
The only security measure that she may not have taken that could be responsible is leaving the wireless network unsecured. If it is, then anyone within range (one of the neighbours, for example), could connect to it and use it. It's possible that the network was secured, but one of the lads turned it off in an attempt to get the 360 to connect, leaving it open for others to use and abuse.

Log in to the router's settings via a web browser and check. If the wireless security is turned off, then turn it back on. You'll also need to reconfigure the settings on the 360 as you'll need to enter in the security key for your network in order for the console to be able to connect to it, assuming it's connected wirelessly and not via an ethernet cable.

12 to 16 hours a day of gaming and voice chat is a LOT though, and if they're using voice chat, gaming online, and downloading demos and other content from Live then it's not that hard to get through 4-5 GB.
 

edjay

Standard Member
Hi thanks for the reply

It's possible that the network was secured, but one of the lads turned it off in an attempt to get the 360 to connect, leaving it open for others to use and abuse.
When you say turned it off, do you mean like a firewall or a password? I can pass that info into her - she's in another part of the country.

If the wireless security is turned off, then turn it back on.
Again, is that just a simple on off button in the software or a password?

12 to 16 hours a day of gaming and voice chat is a LOT though, and if they're using voice chat, gaming online, and downloading demos and other content from Live then it's not that hard to get through 4-5 GB.
That sounds more reasonable than the neighbours - it's literally new toys for them so they're going mad at it. They showed me one up-to-the-minute demo so I presume that was downloaded and I think that on it's own was more that a gig and I'm sure they'll be wanting to have a go at everything.

That gives me some substance to be going on with.

Any further comments appreciated.

Thanks again
 

Sniper Ash6

Distinguished Member
While I agree to it being a good idea to check that the network is secure, I'd go with the 4-5GB per day being pretty easy between two people for 12-16h a day. Especially when outside of those hours the Xbox could remain on downloading demos, DLC and the like.
 

DJSigma

Banned
Hi thanks for the reply

When you say turned it off, do you mean like a firewall or a password?
Yeah, sort of. In the router settings there will be a setting for wireless security. Here's the setting for my router: -

yAIiK.jpg


If this is set to "Disabled", then any device in range of my network can connect to it, which is clearly not a good idea.

When you select a security method from the list (usually people would use WPA2), you are given a key, which is a mix of letters and numbers. You then have to enter that key into all of the devices that you want to be able to connect to the Internet via your wireless network, which locks down the network to outsiders.

To get to this setting you would log into your router's settings page via a regular web browser. That's the first thing I would check, and if the network is secure, then the 4-5GB per day of usage is down to the family's usage and not one of the neighbours, lol.
 

edjay

Standard Member
Ok, thanks for getting back. :)

I'll try and relay the rocket science over the phone - I somehow think a visit will be required!
 
I hope your sister is on a decent package. BT offer only 2 packages that have unlimited usage. The others are 40GB or 10GB per month. So if she is on the small package that would be used in 2 days. So after the second day she will be hit with a £5 charge. Say its 5GB ever day for the 28 days billing. That would be 26 x £5.00 = £130 on top of her bill.

From BT website:
If you exceed your usage allowance, you'll be charged for additional usage in units of 5 gigabytes (GB), at £5 per 5GB. Charges will apply from the second month you exceed your allowance and will be shown on your BT bill.

To help you keep track of your usage we provide a usage monitor which shows how much of your allowance you have used and how much is remaining, each day. You can access the usage monitor through your online account by clicking the 'View my broadband usage' link in the broadband services section. If you haven't set-up an online account then you can register at My BT: View & pay bills, manage services, get help & more

Yes if you have one of them one button security buttons it can let anyone in. BT will provide you with a little card with all the default wireless details.
 
Last edited:

Sniper Ash6

Distinguished Member
...
The others are 40GB or 10GB per month.
...
Fixed. Wouldn't last long otherwise :D

BT's kit comes with the wi-fi secured but it's not hard to turn off so well worth checking.

You should also get emailed when 80% of your limit is up (e.g. 8GB or 32GB dependent on which package she's on).
 
Fixed. Wouldn't last long otherwise :D

BT's kit comes with the wi-fi secured but it's not hard to turn off so well worth checking.

You should also get emailed when 80% of your limit is up (e.g. 8GB or 32GB dependent on which package she's on).

Now fixed.

The problem is when you have problems with NATS. If you play online you may want the best connection and so on........la, la, la. Some people think that removing security over wifi stops lag. :facepalm: Yes thats right wifi security is the cause of online lag. I know someone who works for a very big broadband company and that's the advice he tells people. Please don't remove your wifi security for anyone.

I would check to see how much the BT website is saying that you use. Once you get the amount either take away the 360 or tell them how real life is and they can pay the bill ;)
 

brumhee

Distinguished Member
May also be worth checking the parental controls on the xbox. It limits to some degree what they can and cant do online.

There are a few links around but Xbox Live's Major Nelson » Blog has the best overview. Would link direct to it but can't get to it at work :(
 

brumhee

Distinguished Member
edjay said:
Sorry, too much to look at there. It's ok, I think I 've got all the necessaries.

Thanks for the input everyone.

All the best

Sorry I didn't mean read it all if you search for family settings on that site there's some great stuff

Sent from my Apple Newton
 

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