It sounds like a good example of what John Sentamu has been advocating for Lent. Put a firewall on your PC and leave your wireless wide open as a secret gesture of kindness to those who live nearby, or strangers who are passing through.
Asking around this appears to be a common problem, is it?
Very common. I'm in a corporate complex with about 400 other residential units. At any given time, I may see upwards of 20 unsecured wireless connections. I'm going to guess that many of those are "out of the box" settings. One of my neighbors who maybe just connected and hasn't figured out yet that they need to configure their wireless connection. :(
And then I understand that a few of those unsecured connections may be traps for the unsuspecting. :(