He tampers with Linky meters to reduce electricity bills, his lifestyle alerts the authorities

One would have thought that the Linky meter had been reinforced to resist manipulation as a connected device, and yet. This box, which arouses the anger of some, is not completely protected, as we learn from France 3. A suspect apprehended in Gard is accused of having tampered with the meter of several people for remuneration. The goal was to reduce their electricity bill via a diversion system.

€80,000 and an Audi Q7 seized from the suspect

As reported by ZDNET, which was able to interview an Enedis spokesperson, it was not a software modification. The suspect installed an electrical cable which connected two terminals in the Linky meter so that it no longer detected, or only partially, the household’s electricity consumption. The 36-year-old man also attacked the “old EDF systems†, according to investigators.

€80,000 and an Audi Q7 seized from the suspect

© Enedis

The suspect was betrayed by his lifestyle. His business brought him tidy sums, since the police recovered more than €80,000 from his home in addition to an Audi Q7. In police custody, the man denied the facts and justified these expensive goods with help from associations and relatives. He indicated that he had only provided “advice†for individuals to manipulate their Linky meter. Since then, he has been placed under judicial control following the confessions of his partner, who was also questioned in police custody.

Enedis can compare your electricity consumption

Faced with this manipulation, which is not an isolated act since several similar cases have been reported, Enedis has certain tricks up its sleeve. For example, the EDF subsidiary can compare the consumption data of an individual with the rest of the building and identify an abnormally low bill. In addition, opening the meter without authorization triggers a signal to Enedis, ZDNET recalls.

But when there is material manipulation, the company remains powerless. Replacing Linky meters would probably take too much time and money. All that remains is the authorities’ pursuit of free riders, for the moment.

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