MSNBC has this article on just how, exactly, those $10 "free pay per view" descramblers actually work. Hint: They don't, not really. They just block your box's ability to talk to the home office. Eventually the home office notices this, and then tells the box to shut off. Worse, the box logs all the PPV stuff, so when communications is restored you get a big honking bill for all your "freebies".
C'mon people, the cable company designed the digital cable system to be as tamper-free as possible. Analog boxes were easy to snark because they were just a bunch of circuits and wires. These new boxes are computerized way beyond anything before. I wouldn't be surprised if there was a little peephole camera that took pictures of you wanking to the "Girls Gone Gaga" video you ordered.