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Acceptable Use Policy

ACCEPTABLE USE POLICY

This Policy forms part of the Agreement between the Client and Hosting Partners and is binding on Clients using Hosting Partner’s services. The AUP sets out in detail what forms of conduct Hosting Partners regards as unacceptable on the part of its Clients and the steps which Hosting Partners may take in response to unacceptable use of its services. Please take the time to acquaint yourself fully with the provisions of this Policy.

1. General

1By contracting with Hosting Partners for services, the Client agrees, without limitation or qualification, to be bound by this Policy and the terms and conditions it contains, as well as any other additional terms, conditions, rules or policies which are displayed to the Client in connection with the Services.

2The purpose of this AUP is to:

2.1ensure compliance with the relevant laws of the Republic;

2.2specify to Clients and users of Hosting Partner’s service what activities and online behaviour are considered an unacceptable use of the service;

2.3protect the integrity of Hosting Partner’s network; and

2.4specify the consequences that may flow from undertaking such prohibited activities.

3This document contains a number of legal obligations which the Client will be presumed to be familiar with. As such, Hosting Partners encourages the Client to read this document thoroughly and direct any queries to enquiries@hostingpartners.co.za.

4Hosting Partners respects the rights of Hosting Partner’s Clients and users of Hosting Partner’s services to freedom of speech and expression, access to information, privacy, human dignity, religion, belief and opinion.

2. Unacceptable Use

1Hosting Partner’s services may only be used for lawful purposes and activities. Hosting Partners prohibits any use of its Services including the transmission, storage and distribution of any material or content using Hosting Partner’s network that violates any law or regulation of the Republic. This includes, but is not limited to:

1.1Any violation of local and international laws prohibiting child pornography, obscenity, discrimination (including racial, gender or religious slurs) and hate speech, or speech designed to incite violence or hatred, or threats to cause bodily harm.

1.2Any activity designed to defame, abuse, stalk, harass or physically threaten any individual in the Republic or beyond its borders; including any attempt to link to, post, transmit or otherwise distribute any inappropriate or defamatory material.

1.3Any violation of Intellectual Property laws including materials protected by local and international copyright, trademarks and trade secrets.

1.4Any violation of another’s right to privacy, including any effort to collect personal data of third parties without their consent.

1.5Any fraudulent activity whatsoever, including dubious financial practices, such as pyramid schemes; the impersonation of another client without their consent; or any attempt to enter into a transaction with Hosting Partners on behalf of another client without their consent.

1.6Any violation of the exchange control laws of the Republic.

2.1.7Any activity that results in the sale, transmission or distribution of pirated or illegal software.

3. Threats to Network Security

1Any activity which threatens the functioning, security and/or integrity of Hosting Partner’s network is unacceptable. This includes:

1.1Any efforts to attempt to gain unlawful and unauthorised access to the network or circumvent any of the security measures established by Hosting Partners for this goal.

1.2Any effort to use Hosting Partner’s equipment to circumvent the user authentication or security of any host, network or account (“cracking” or “hacking”).

1.3Forging of any TCP/IP packet headers (spoofing) or any part of the headers of an email or a newsgroup posting.

1.4Any effort to breach or attempt to breach the security of another user or attempt to gain access to any other person’s computer, software, or data without the knowledge and consent of such person.

1.5Any activity which threatens to disrupt the service offered by Hosting Partners through “denial of service attacks”; flooding of a network, or overloading a service or any unauthorised probes (“scanning” or “nuking”) of others’ networks.

1.6Any activity which in any way threatens the security of the network by knowingly posting, transmitting, linking to or otherwise distributing any information or software which contains a virus, Trojan horse, worm, malware, botnet or other harmful, destructive or disruptive component.

1.7Any unauthorised monitoring of data or traffic on the network without Hosting Partner’s explicit, written consent.

1.8Running services and applications with known vulnerabilities and weaknesses, e.g. insufficient anti-automation attacks, any traffic amplification attacks, including recursive DNS attacks, SMTP relay attacks.

3.1.9Failing to respond adequately to a denial of service attack (DOS / DDOS).

4. Contention

1Network capacity and performance is subject to contention for services from users. This means that a significant rise in demand can affect the availability of bandwidth to users. Hosting Partners manages contention through the implementation of Quality of Service on applicable products. Contention is a function of demand from users and is not strictly within Hosting Partner’s direct control, however Hosting Partners will use the provisions of the AUP and Terms and Conditions to manage contention and minimise the impact to performance to offer the best possible experience at all times.

7. Spam and Unsolicited Bulk Mail

1Hosting Partners regards all unsolicited bulk email (whether commercial in nature or not) as spam, with the following exceptions:

1.1Mail sent by one party to another where there is already a prior relationship between the two parties and the subject matter of the message(s) concerns that relationship;

1.2Mail sent by one party to another with the explicit consent of the receiving party.

1.3Clients should only receive bulk mail that they have requested and/or consented to receive and/or which they would expect to receive as a result of an existing relationship.

2Hosting Partners will take swift and firm action against any user engaging in any of the following unacceptable practices:

2.1Sending unsolicited bulk mail for marketing or any other purposes (political, religious or commercial) to people who have not consented to receiving such mail.

2.2Using any part of Hosting Partner’s infrastructure for the purpose of unsolicited bulk mail, whether sending, receiving, bouncing, or facilitating such mail.

2.3Operating or maintaining mailing lists without the express permission of all recipients listed. In particular, Hosting Partners does not permit the sending of “opt-out” mail, where the recipient must opt out of receiving mail which they did not request. For all lists, the sender must maintain meaningful records of when and how each recipient requested mail. Hosting Partners will also monitor Clients deemed to be operating “cleaning lists”, which is using illegally obtained email addresses but removing addresses as complaints arise. Should Hosting Partners, at its discretion, believe that this is the case, it will be treated as SPAM.

2.4Failing to promptly remove from lists invalid or undeliverable addresses or addresses of unwilling recipients or a recipient who has indicated s/he wishes to be removed from such list, or failing to provide the recipient with a facility to opt-out.

2.5Using Hosting Partner’s service to collect responses from unsolicited email sent from accounts on other Internet hosts or e-mail services that violate this AUP or the AUP of any other Internet service provider. Advertising any facility on Hosting Partner’s infrastructure in unsolicited bulk mail (e.g. a website advertised in spam).

2.6Including Hosting Partner’s name in the header or by listing an IP address that belongs to Hosting Partners in any unsolicited email whether sent through Hosting Partner’s network or not.

2.7Failure to secure a Client’s mail server against public relay as a protection to themselves and the broader Internet community. Public relay occurs when a mail server is accessed by a third party from another domain and utilised to deliver mails, without the authority or consent of the owner of the mail-server. Mail servers that are unsecured against public relay often become abused by unscrupulous operators for spam delivery and upon detection such delivery must be disallowed. Hosting Partners reserves the right to examine users’ mail servers to confirm that no mails are being sent from the mail server through public relay and the results of such checks can be made available to the user. Hosting Partners also reserves the right to examine the mail servers of any users using Hosting Partner’s mail servers for “smart hosting” (when the user relays its mail via an Hosting Partners mail server to a mail server of its own or vice versa) or similar services at any time to ensure that the servers are properly secured against public relay. All relay checks will be done in strict accordance with Hosting Partner’s Privacy Policy and the laws of South Africa.

8. Users Outside of South Africa

8.1Where any user resides outside of the Republic, permanently or temporarily, such user will be subject to the laws of the country in which s/he is currently resident and which apply to the user. On presentation of a legal order to do so, or under obligation through an order for mutual foreign legal assistance, Hosting Partners will assist foreign law enforcement agencies (LEAs) in the investigation and prosecution of a crime committed using Hosting Partner’s resources, including the provisioning of all personal identifiable data.

9. Hosting

1Hosting Partners doesn’t offer unlimited bandwidth (web traffic) usage on Shared Hosting platforms. However, even though clients may exceed their allocated disk space and/or bandwidth (at an additional cost of R21.00 p/Gb) this is subject to reasonable and responsible usage, as determined at Hosting Partner’s discretion. Shared Hosting is designed for serving personal hosting requirements or that of small enterprises, and not medium to large enterprises. Hosting Partners reserves the right to move Clients deemed to have excessive bandwidth usage to a Cloud product, which will better suit their requirements. Clients will be given notice as such, and will be informed of any cost implications.

2Disk Space on Shared Hosting may only be used for Website Content, Emails and related System Files. General data storage, archiving or file sharing of documents, files or media not directly related to the website content is strictly prohibited. Unauthorised storage or distribution of copyrighted materials is prohibited, via FTP hosts or any other means.

3For Shared Hosting, Hosting Partners will implement security updates, software patches and other updates or upgrades from time to time, to maintain the best performance, at their sole discretion. These upgrades include, but are not limited to, PHP, MySQL and cPanel release versions. Hosting Partners is under no obligation to effect such upgrades, or to rectify any impact such changes could potentially have to Hosting Clients.

4Hosting Partners will not be liable or responsible for the backing up, restoration or loss of data under any circumstances. Clients are solely responsible for ensuring their data is regularly backed up and for restoring such backups in the event of data loss or corruption.

5Hosting Partners prohibits Clients from doing the following on hosting platforms administered by Hosting Partners:

5.1Running applications that are not production-ready. Any applications on the hosting platform must be optimised with respect to memory usage and must have appropriate data indexing.

5.2Running applications with inadequate security controls.

5.3Generating significant side-channel traffic from an application, whether by design or otherwise. Databases should be stored locally, and remote content should be cached.

5.4Failure to maintain proper “housekeeping” on a shared server including storing or generating useless content, including comment spam, unused cache files, log file and database entries.

5.5Storing malicious content, such as malware or links to malware.

5.6Monopolising server resources, including CPU time, memory, network and disk bandwidth.

5.7Maintaining long-running processes and long-running database queries.

5.8Storing or running back-door shells, mass mailing scripts, proxy servers, web spiders, phishing content, or peer-to-peer software.

5.9Sending bulk mail of any form, particularly mail that cannot be efficiently delivered due to volume or incorrect addresses.

5.10Using poor passwords.

5.11Sharing security credentials with untrusted parties.

5.12Running Torrents for download or Seed Servers.

5.13Running TOR (or other Online Anonymity Services).

5.14Otherwise circumventing the Acceptable Use Policy or intended use of the product.

9.5.15The mining of cryptographic currencies on our Physical and Virtual hosting platforms. This causes considerable strain on our hosting resources outside of reasonable limits and is therefore prohibited.

10. Protection of Minors

1Hosting Partners prohibits Clients from using Hosting Partner’s service to harm or attempt to harm a minor, including, but not limited to, by hosting, possessing, disseminating, distributing or transmitting material that is unlawful, including child pornography and cyber bullying.

2Hosting Partners prohibits Clients from using Hosting Partner’s service to host sexually explicit or pornographic material of any nature.

11. Privacy and Confidentiality

1Hosting Partners respects the privacy and confidentiality of Hosting Partner’s Clients and users of Hosting Partner’s service. Please review Hosting Partner’s Privacy Policy which details how Hosting Partners collects and uses personal information gathered in the course of operating its Services.

12. User Responsibilities

1Clients are responsible for any misuse of Hosting Partner’s services that occurs through the Client’s account. It is the Client’s responsibility to ensure that unauthorised persons do not gain access to or misuse Hosting Partner’s service.

2Hosting Partners urges Clients not to reply to unsolicited mail or “spam”, not to click on any suggested links provided in the unsolicited mail. Doing so remains the sole responsibility of the Client and Hosting Partners cannot be held liable for the Client being placed on any bulk mailing lists as a result.

3Where the Client has authorised a minor to use any of the Hosting Partner’s services or access its websites, the Client accepts that as the parent/legal guardian of that minor, the Client is fully responsible for: the online conduct of such minor, controlling the minor’s access to and use of any services or websites, and the consequences of any misuse by the minor.

13. Complaints Procedure

13.1Complaints relating to the violation of this AUP should be submitted in writing to enquiries@hostingpartners.co.za. Complaints must be substantiated, and unambiguously state the nature of the problem, and its connection to Hosting Partner’s network and services.

14. Action Following Breach of the AUP

1Upon receipt of a complaint, or having become aware of an incident, Hosting Partners may, in its sole and reasonably-exercised discretion take any of the following steps:

1.1

In the case of Clients, warn the Client, suspend the Client account and/or revoke or cancel the Client’s Service access privileges completely;

1.2

In the case of an abuse emanating from a third party, inform the third party’s network administrator of the incident and request the network administrator or network owner to address the incident in terms of this AUP and/or the ISPA Code of Conduct (if applicable);

1.3

In severe cases suspend access of the third party’s entire network until abuse can be prevented by appropriate means;

1.4

In all cases, charge the offending parties for administrative costs as well as for machine and human time lost due to the incident;

1.5

Assist other networks or website administrators in investigating credible suspicions of any activity listed in this AUP;

1.6

Institute civil or criminal proceedings;

1.7

Share information concerning the incident with other Internet access providers, or publish the information, and/or make available the users’ details to law enforcement agencies; aSuspend1.8

Suspend or terminate the Service as provided for in the Agreement.

14.2This policy applies to and will be enforced for intended and unintended (e.g., viruses, worms, malicious code, or otherwise unknown causes) prohibited usage.

15. Reservation and Non Waiver of Rights

1Hosting Partners reserves the right to amend or alter this policy at any time, and without notice to the Client.

2Hosting Partners reserves the right to take action against any individuals, companies or organisations that violate the AUP, or engage in any illegal or unlawful activity while accessing Hosting Partner’s services, to the fullest extent of the law.

3Hosting Partners reserves the right, at its sole discretion, to act against other types of abuse not listed in this document and to investigate or prevent illegal activities being committed over Hosting Partner’s network.

15.4Hosting Partners does not waive its right to enforcement of this AUP at any time, or prejudice its right to take subsequent action, should Hosting Partners fail, neglect or elect not to enforce a breach of the AUP at any time.

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