Hundreds of Crew Members Fired for Using Free Internet Access App Onboard

May 19, 2018

A week ago former Carnival Cruise Line employee send me a message saying that last year many crew members were fired for using an app which provides free access to the onboard internet. The app called YOUR FREEDOM was widely used by Carnival crew on many ships, and for just $7 for 6 months crew were able to get unlimited access to surf the net.

“On Carnival Cruise Line cruise ships network it was a big drama because a lot of crew members used an app in their phone called Your Freedom which is giving you free access in any network for free internet and it has to pay 7 $ for 6 months instead of Carnival prices 5 $ per day just for social sites. IT department send email to CCL office about this app and they start to fire people who used this app. CCL lose a lot of money because of this app. I have been working on Carnival Cruise Line and I have seen a lot of my coworkers fired by Carnival.” the crew member says.

According to the website, this app makes accessible what is unaccessible to you, and it hides your network address from those who don't need to know. It turns the mobile phone or PC into an uncensored, anonymous web proxy and users can access applications blocked by the system.

At the FAQ section “Will this app get me a free internet connection?”  it answers: 

Probably yes, particularly if you use DNS tunneling mode. You may be able to get a working mobile phone connection when the provider does not want it to be working, and you may be able to use wireless hotspots without paying for the usage.

The crew was using this app on many Carnival cruise ships in 2016/17. After detecting the flaw in their system Carnival send specialists from IT and IS department and started to update their onboard firewalls. The app is not working anymore, however many Carnival crew members were fired and sent home straight away.

In conversation with one crew member who got fired for this reason, he says that as many as 120 crew members were fired last year from Carnival Spirit. “I joined Carnival Spirit in February 2017 in Australia and shortly after security came to my cabin and took my mobile phone and laptop. Then I was called by Staff Captain that said there was a warning on the crew notice board that anyone using this app will face disciplinary actions, and that using this app is theft from the company. I didn’t notice this warning when I came on board and during the first-week trainings nobody said nothing about this.” Says the crew member.

After one month he was visited by ships security and told to pack his bags within two hours and was escorted off the ship. “I was surprised that this lead to my dismissal and not with a warning. I was working for the company for four years but I guess this doesn’t mean anything to them. One thing that I felt injustice is when they were updating the system and my regular internet card which I bought was not working and I lost my money. I tried to complain and get my money back but without success. This shows that Carnival is looking only for their profits. Don’t get me wrong, I had a great time working onboard and loved being there. I don’t regret any moment being for the company. I just like to mention one more thing. There were people fired who were with the company for 16 years and Carnival fired them for one mistake they made. Some 124 crew was fired from Carnival Spirit alone. All of them were not fired at once. The company did this in a period of 4 months in order onboard operations to run as normal as possible.

The total number of crew fired over this issue is not known.