Acceptable Use Policy
This policy sets out how you may use the services that we supply, and any restrictions on your use of these services. Many of the guidelines will be obvious, however we set them out here so that there can be no confusion or doubt over what is or is not acceptable.
You should check this policy regularly as we may change it to take on board new issues that may arise in connection with your use of our services. The most up to date version of the policy will apply to your use of our services at all times.
If we have reasonable grounds to suspect that you are in breach of this policy or any other terms on which we provide services to you, or you do anything which would put us in breach of our statutory or other obligations, or you use your services in a way which adversely impacts our network or our supplier's network, then we reserve the right to suspend or terminate your access to our services without liability to you. We will give you notice of termination as soon as it is practical to do so.
2) General Use
In this section of our acceptable use policy we describe general principles for the use of our services. These conditions apply to all sub-sections of this agreement.
As a general principle, you must not use our services in any way that is unlawful or illegal or in a way that adversely affects other users of our services. Specifically, you may not use our services, either directly or indirectly:
- to transmit, receive, publish or link to any material which is illegal; or
- to transmit, receive, publish or link to any material which is defamatory, offensive, abusive, obscene, indecent, racist, harmful, threatening or menacing; or
- to transmit, receive, publish or link to any material which infringes upon any other parties rights, including but not limited to breaches of copyright, confidence and privacy; or
- to impersonate any other person, or to commit, or to attempt to commit fraud; or
- to transmit, receive, publish or link to any material with the intention of adversely affecting the security, performance or functionality of our or any other parties systems; or
- in a way that does not conform with the acceptable use policies of any connected networks, or any general Internet standards; or
- in breach of any special instructions we have stipulated under our agreement.
In this section of our acceptable use policy we describe your responsibilities under our agreement with regards to security.
- It is your responsibility to ensure the security of your internal systems and any data held on them. We can not be held responsible for breaches in the security of your internal systems, or for beaches in the security of services we supply to you that occur as the result of a breach in the security of your own systems.
- We shall take all reasonable measures to ensure the security of services we supply you with and the data we hold for you. We can not however be held responsible in the event of an unforeseeable breach of security that affects your services or data we hold for you.
- You must not use the service to knowingly or unknowingly cause to be transmitted worms, trojans or viruses or any other form of mal-ware. It is your responsibility to ensure that any systems that you use in conjunction with our services are secure and free from such threats.
4) Data Protection and Privacy
In this section of our acceptable use policy we describe your responsibilities under our agreement with regards to privacy and compliance with current data protection legislation.
Details of the UK Data Protection law and registration requirements can be found at http://www.dataprotection.gov.uk/
No one may use our services, either directly or indirectly:
- in breach of the provisions of current data protection legislation or any directions issued by the Data Protection Commissioner;
- to transmit, receive, publish or link to any material designed to obtain sensitive information from other users of our services.
- to transmit, receive, publish or link to any material designed to obtain information from another party without consent.
In this section of our acceptable use policy we describe your responsibilities under our agreement with regards to sending and receiving email.
- You are responsible for ensuring that you have your email account properly setup in your email client and that you check the account.
- You are responsible for downloading and storing on your own systems any email messages or other related types of data that you wish to retain. We reserve the right to delete from our systems any email messages (read or unread) after a period of 30 days.
- The sending of unsolicited commercial email (spam) through our service is strictly prohibited. Please see Appendix A for details.
- The operation of mailing lists is permitted only where those lists are operated on an opt-in basis and in strict accordance with accepted "best practice" guidelines. Please see Appendix A for details.
- The sending of high volumes of email through our email service is prohibited except for customers of our high volume email relay service. Please see Appendix B for details.
- On termination of your services for any reason any email messages (read or unread) or any related data may be deleted from our systems with immediate effect and without prior notice.
In this section of our acceptable use policy we describe your responsibilities under our agreement with regards to the hosting and publishing of material on the world-wide-web (www).
- You are responsible for the content published on your own website. This includes content provided to us as part of any design and development services, as well as any content you add yourself through the use of the administration tools we provide.
- You must ensure that no material of an adult nature is displayed or linked to before a clear warning has been given and the user has had the opportunity to decline to view such material. We define adult material as material which might reasonably be considered to be unsuitable for viewing by minors.
- You must ensure that no material of a pornographic nature is published on your own website. The use of our systems to host pornographic material is prohibited. We define pornographic material as material showing scenes of an explicit sexual nature.
- You must obtain all necessary rights and clearances for the inclusion and publication of anyone else's work on your website.
- You must ensure that you provide clear and accurate information on your website about any charges which will be levied for use of the website.
- We reserve the right to request the removal of any material or links from your website if we consider that you are in breach of this acceptable use policy.
- If your website generates abnormally high levels of network traffic we may at our discretion move it and/or restrict access to it and you shall be liable for any additional charges arising from our action.
- You may not advertise or promote a website hosted on our network through the sending of unsolicited commercial mailings (spam). Please see appendix A for further details.
- On termination of your services for any reason, we may delete your website files and all associated data from our systems with immediate effect and without prior notice.
Appendix A: Operation of Mailing Lists
The use of our services to send unsolicited commercial email (also known as spam or UCE) is prohibited under section 5 condition (c) of our acceptable use policy. The advertising of websites hosted on our network via the sending of unsolicited commercial mailings (spam) is prohibited under section 6 condition (h) of our acceptable use policy.
These restrictions are necessary in order to prevent our network from becoming blacklisted as the source of spam; a serious consideration which would have a detrimental effect to all users of our services.
However, under section 5 condition (d) of our acceptable use policy we permit the operation of mailings lists which are operated on an opt-in basis in strict accordance with current “best practice” guidelines.
In order for your mailings to be considered opt-in and thus permissible, you must ensure that you adhere to the guidelines outlined below. Failure to do so will be considered to be a violation of our acceptable use policy.
Opt-In Mailing Lists — Best Practice Guidelines
These industry standard “best practice” guidelines have been laid out in order to protect the rights of all parties involved in the operation of a mailing list:
- You may send mailings only to recipients who have previously granted consent for you to do so. Consent must be granted verbally or by other affirmative action such as the recipient ticking a box on a website form indicating their consent to receive mailings.
- Recipients of your mailing must be provided with a mechanism whereby they may retract their consent to be contacted by email. Instructions explaining how to do so must be included within every mailing you send, must be clearly visible, and must be practical. You must honour unsubscribe requests.
- Consent is non-transferable. Where a recipient has granted consent to another organisation to send mailings to them by email, and where details of that organisation’s mailing list have been transferred to you, you may not assume consent to email the recipients.
- You must send your mailings from an email address on a domain name you own or you have the right to use. You may not use a fake from address.
- Your mailings must include a subject line which is not misleading.
- You must not interfere with or fake the message headers.
- You must remove email addresses that generate bounces from your list so as to avoid generating high levels of bounces.
- You must not use the CC field to address your messages or otherwise expose recipient's email addresses to each other.
- You must ensure that your newsletter does not generate excessive numbers of complaints from recipients. Complaints can be avoided by ensuring that the message is of a professional standard and is sent only to recipients who have granted consent recently.
- We reserve the right to decline to deliver newsletters which have previously resulted in excessive numbers of complaints, or which have caused our systems to become blacklisted, or which have otherwise had an adverse affect on our network, our supplier's network, or our other customer's services.
Opt-In Mailing Lists — Advantages
There are many advantages to operating your commercial mailing list in accordance with these guidelines, as outlined below:
- The rights of the recipient are protected. The recipient will receive only mailings which they have consented to receive, and can retract consent at any time.
- The rights of the host are protected. Since the recipients rights are not being violated there is a greatly reduced risk of the host’s network becoming blacklisted as the result of complaints from angry recipients of spam.
- Although often the operator of the commercial mailing list who operates in accordance with these guidelines will often be dealing with smaller quantities of recipients when compared to unsolicited lists, experience shows that this more targeted approach to marketing in fact benefits from far greater conversion ratios.
Appendix B: Sending High Volumes of Email
The use of our standard email service to send high volumes of email is prohibited under section 5 condition (e) of our acceptable use policy. We define high volume as 1,000 messages or 100MB a day or more.
This restriction is necessary in order to ensure that a customer sending high volumes of email does not adversely affect the delivery of other customer's messages.
For customers who wish to send high volumes of email - for example to operate a mailing list as described in Appendix A of this policy - we can provide access to a high volume email relay service.
This service uses dedicated systems so that message queues are separated from those of our other customers, and is configured for the delivery of high volumes of email, for example skipping the intensive virus and spam scanning operations performed on our standard systems.
Customers of our email relay service must ensure that all their high volume mailings are sent through the dedicated systems provided for that purpose, and not through our standard systems.
Please note that the restrictions discussed in Appendix A continue to apply to messages sent through our email relay service and that the sending of unsolicited commercial email remains strictly prohibited.
We reserve the right to decline to provide, or to suspend or terminate email relay services entirely at our own discretion should your use of those services be deemed to have had or be likely to have an adverse impact on our network, or supplier's network or other customer's services.