It's a well know fact that very few people read the Terms of Service when accessing a public WIFI network. The internet is full of hilarious stories like:

22,000 people agree to clean toilets for WIFI because they didn't the terms

7,500 Online Shoppers Unknowingly Sold Their Souls

Where people put funny things in the TOS of their WiFi Network and no one reads it. But, what I'm wondering about what kind of damage someone could do. For example, could a hacker include a clause in the agreement that gave them permission to access any accounts the end user logged onto while on the WiFi network? Are there laws/regulations that would prevent such abuse?

  • You can't make a legally binding contract to perform illegal acts. You also can't make a contract that breaks other terms of service, so I doubt a hacker wanting to do this would go the "legal" route.
    – Ron Beyer
    Aug 17 '18 at 2:27

Beyond the fact that the wifi TOS would likely be illegal in the sense that you would be requiring access to all the wifi users applications in exchange for wifi access, what you mean with "access any accounts the end user logged onto while on the WiFi network" is mixing network apples and oranges.

You're talking about two different network protocols and layers (TCP/IP, and the user's application layer) that do not intersect in technical ways as to automatically give the wifi network administrator access to any application a wifi user might use on their device.

The wifi network owner would have to require the wifi user to hand over all application logins and passwords when they accessed the wifi, and it's doubtful many users would do that when confronted with the choice of free wifi in exchange for such personal information.

Short of getting logins and passwords up front on the wifi login screen, the wifi network owner would have to do deep packet analysis to capture logins and passwords, possibly decrypt them (even if that's possible with SSL connections), and in that case is probably a violation of many computer and network security and privacy laws, even if outlined in the TOS.