Dad faces 6 months jail for breaking entire town’s internet to stop teens gaming

A French dad is in big trouble with the law after he accidentally shut down his entire town's internet using an illegal signal jammer.

The dad says he was just trying to stop his teenagers from going online after midnight when they were meant to be sleeping.

However, he ended up stopping the entire town of Messanges in south-west France from accessing either their mobile or Internet services between midnight and 3AM every day.

The man could now face a €30,000 fine and up to 6 months in jail as a result of the mishap, which was reported to the French authorities after a neighbouring town couldn't get online either.

The man's defence was that his teenagers had become addicted to social media and he simply wanted them to get a proper bedtime.

"His children had indeed become addicted to social networks and other applications, in particular since the confinement imposed due to the epidemic of Covid-19," ANFR explained in their report.

"After consulting forums on the internet, the father decided that a jammer was the best solution to put an end to these excesses!"

He bought the 'jammer' kit online after looking at an Internet forum, but got a bit more than he bargained for.

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French police have since seized the device and are reportedly investigating the offence. Using a jamming device is illegal in France, and carries a heavy fine and jail time.

Dr David Greenfield is the founder and medical director of the world's first Internet rehab and the author of 'Overcoming Internet addiction'.

He told the Daily Star: "I advocate for people forcibly separating themselves from their phone, or laptop, or tablet for some time every day. Not forever, but for enough time that you develop some connection to things outside of you. Stick your phone in the glove compartment of your car and take a walk."

He added: "It's just easy to miss life when you've got a screen in front of your face. Friends and family are the things that make life worth living. Not anything on a screen."

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