Locating the discoverer of a specific network

Suggestions for WiGLE/JiGLE/DiGLE

3 posts • Page 1 of 1
Hello WiGLE Community,
I know this is probably in the wrong section, but this seems like the more general area of the forums, and this is somewhat of a suggestion, so here goes.

Over 6 years ago, on February 26, 2011, a WiGLE user discovered my grandfather's personal wireless network, being broadcast from his old home - he moved out in 2013. At the time that he lived at this house (I was also living there for a short time while unemployed) I remember connecting to this network, but since I had no interest in wardriving or any other sort of "computer stuff" at the time, I never paid attention to the router itself. The reason this is important to me is because some very important personal information - information which my family and I now find ourselves in desperate need of - was stored on a computer connected to that network. Here's what I know so far:

- Looking up the router's MAC tells me that it's a Netgear, although I could have sworn that when my grandfather and I donated much of his old stuff to a local thrift, I saw a 2WIRE DSL modem/router in there with an AT&T logo on it (like this one: https://i.ebayimg.com/thumbs/images/g/E ... s-l225.jpg)

- It was a WEP network

- There were a few computers which had all probably been connected at one point: a newer HP desktop running Windows 8, an old desktop, I believe Dell, running Windows XP, < (this was probably the computer it was stored on) and a Toshiba Satellite laptop from 2002 which I own, but unfortunately the hard drive has long since been changed out.

- I cannot remember if the ISP was AT&T or Comcast, but as I mentioned, I'm almost certain that he had an old 2WIRE router/DSL combo with an AT&T logo. To my knowledge Comcast has never offered 2WIRE router/modem combos, and my grandfather would never deviate from the standard ISP-provided router and/or modem.

My objective here is to find the WiGLEr who discovered the network in the first place. I know it sounds silly, but I feel like at this point, they're the only hope I have of ever being pointed in the right direction as to the whereabouts of this information. Like I said, I know it's a very strange request, but at this point, I'm really grasping at any remotely possible chance I have to recover even a bit of this information. It holds a deep sentimental value in the hearts of myself and my family, and more importantly, we are going to need it for legal matters very soon.

Thank you.
Hi Minstarmin,

I'm afraid we never give out observer information ourselves - user privacy is paramount... but you could post information here in hopes that the contributing user would help you out. If you're looking for the router, you may not need the discovering user - you can check the "network detail" link behind the MAC address in advanced search to get a list of locations at which it's been seen since (if any).

Regarding the chipset, there's some cross-licensing of wireless chipests vs. manufacturers, ranges can be sublicensed, and the wireshark manufacturer data is far from fool-proof. For a list of the wireless chipsets in various 2Wires, https://wikidevi.com/wiki/2Wire looks pretty good.

Do I understand correctly that you're looking for the old computer, or some files that were stored on it? Your hope here is that the router and PC went to the same destination? It might be most efficient to check with the charity to which you donated the equipment - they may be able to tell you where it went, many of them make a point of wiping or destroying hard drives, and some send equipment to scrap/remanufacturing sites off-shore. As lousy as that might be to learn these things, it would save you time and heartache to know.

Sorry, and feel free to reach out with more questions here; I'm sure folks will have better suggestions than me.
I understand, thank you for your suggestions. The charity has been shut down, but maybe I could try to find the owners and see if they can give me any information. I know that MAC manufacturer look-ups aren't perfect - after all, MAC addresses are somewhat arbitrary. Thank you again.

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