Acceptable Use Policy

Acceptabnle use Policy

Please note that in this AUP, "we"/"us"/"our" means VM Linux (UK) Limited registered company in England no: 3615064. and "you"/"your" denotes you the customer.

General Information

This AUP applies to every VM Linux product and service and your use of them. For some products and services there are particular points to which you must conform when you are using that product or service. Appendices A through C of this document give further guidance as to how this AUP is applied to specific Products and services.

It is your responsibility to ensure your compliance with all applicable provisions of this AUP. If you have any comments or queries, or there is any provision that you do not understand, please feel free to email any enquiry to [email protected]

  • You must not use your VM Linux product/service for any illegal purpose.
  • Your traffic over the Internet may traverse other networks, or use other services which are not owned or operated by VM Linux. You must abide by the acceptable use policies and other terms and conditions imposed by the operators of those networks and services.
  • VM Linux may, at its sole discretion, run manual or automatic systems to determine compliance with this AUP (e.g. scanning for open mail relays or smurf amplifiers).
  • You are required to accept email addressed to "postmaster" at your address. For example, if you have the domain "example.co.uk", then you should accept email addressed [email protected] respectively. You will be deemed to have read any and all such postmaster-addressed email. VM Linux may take action on the basis of this assumption.
  • Your usage of the Internet must conform to community standards.

It is not possible to codify exactly what constitutes "acceptable use" and "unacceptable use" or abuse of the Internet. These terms depend upon the many informal understandings which have arisen between the administrators, owners and operators of the computers and networks that together constitute the Internet, and of which VM Linux is only one participant among many.

However, VM Linux's relationship with other networks, and ultimately its connectivity to the rest of the Internet, depends largely upon proper behavior by its customers. VM Linux cannot tolerate any behavior by customers which negatively impacts upon its own equipment or network, or upon the use by other customers of the Internet, or which damages VM Linux's standing in the wider Internet community.

Therefore, it is important that when activity that might constitute abuse occurs, that VM Linux takes appropriate action - if it did not, and such abuse was permitted to continue, VM Linux would lose the confidence of the wider Internet community, which in turn would significantly impair VM Linux's customers freedom to use the Internet.

This AUP and its day-to-day application by VM Linux are a result of VM Linux's consideration of both the formal and informal practices of the Internet community. The Appendices to this AUP are intended to assist customers in understanding the types of issues that can arise and what VM Linux will consider to be unacceptable behavior that does not conform to community standards.

We will investigate suspected or alleged breaches of this AUP and in doing so we will endeavour to act reasonably and fairly at all times. If you are found to have breached this AUP or the Conditions of Use or Terms and Conditions that apply to your service, we reserve the right in our sole discretion to take whatever measures we deem appropriate and proportionate to the breach. These measures may include a formal warning, suspending or terminating one or more of your accounts, making an additional charge for our reasonable costs of investigating and dealing with the misuse, and/or blocking access to any relevant component(s) of our service to you. If we suspend your access then this suspension may be lifted, at VM Linux's sole discretion, when the reason for suspension has been rectified and upon receipt of a formal written undertaking from you not to commit any future "abuse". All cases are, however, considered individually upon their merits.

Without limitation, you expressly authorise us to use your personal data and other account information in connection with any such investigation, including by disclosing it to any third party whom we consider has a legitimate interest in any such investigation or its outcome. We have in place a procedure for handling your complaints about material stored and/or accessed via our service. If you wish to make such a complaint, please ensure that you make your complaint by email to [email protected] If you do not use this facility we cannot guarantee that your complaint will be dealt with promptly.

The appendices refer in some cases to external web sites. VM Linux is not responsible for the content of these web sites. If you need any further information regarding this AUP, then please email [email protected]

Appendix A: General Internet Access

  • Some material is illegal to possess or transmit. You should also be aware that unauthorized access to computer systems could be an offence. Although many machines are connected to the Internet for general access, it does not follow that you may access any computer system you come across.
  • Whilst connected to the Internet your system must conform to all relevant IETF (Internet Engineering Task Force) standards.
  • The IETF standards are a subset of the RFC (Request for Comments) collection and can be found at: https://www.ietf.org/rfc/rfc1160.txt/
  • You must not send information packets onto the Internet that have forged addresses or which are deliberately constructed so as to adversely affect remote machines.
  • You may not run "scanning" software which accesses remote machines or networks, except with the explicit permission of the operators of those remote machines or networks.
  • You must ensure that you do not further the sending of unsolicited bulk email or any other form of email or Usenet "abuse". This applies to both material that originates on your system and also third party material that may pass through it.
  • Your machine or network must not be configured in such a way that others can exploit it to disrupt the Internet. This includes but is not limited to ensuring that your network cannot be exploited as a "smurf amplifier".
  • You must not run an "open mail relay", that is, a machine which accepts mail from unauthorized or unknown senders and forwards it onward to a destination outside of your machine or network. If your machine performs relay mail on an authorised basis, then it must record this mail passing through your system by means of an appropriate "Received:" line.
  • As an exception to the ban on relaying, you may run an "anonymous" relay service provided that you monitor it in such a way as to detect unauthorized or excessive use. However, you may not relay traffic from such an anonymous system via VM Linux's servers, i.e.: you can only pass email from such a system to VM Linux where this is the correct destination for final delivery.

Appendix B: Email

There are many forms of email abuse. This appendix discusses the more common forms in an informal manner, but is by no means an exhaustive list It is usual to describe "abuse" as being abuse of Internet facilities, rather than vulgar abuse sent via the Internet. To qualify as "abuse", an act must significantly interfere with the use of the network by an individual or group of individuals in some specific way, for example by consuming resources or wasting others time. The term "abuse" also includes activities that are illegal or dishonest. Generalities aside, due to the practical problems caused by "spamming" VM Linux wishes to make it clear that it considers the sending of bulk unsolicited email, of any kind, to be unacceptable behavior VM Linux will always act when such behavior is brought to its notice. Education, in the form of an email warning, can be the most appropriate response to a first offence, since customers can be unaware of contemporary standards. However, it is VM Linux’s policy to terminate the accounts of any customer who continues to send bulk unsolicited email.

Chain letters, "make money fast" and other
ponzi pyramid-selling schemes

These articles are similar to paper versions, where you add your name at the end of a list and send the message to lots of your friends. The person at the head of the list is typically sent some small amount of money and hopes to become rich. Simple mathematics shows why they do not work in theory, and a little thought about human nature will show you why they do not work in practice either. These schemes, even where they offer no financial or material reward are unacceptable abuse. They waste resources for Internet service providers and for the users who download them. If they do involve money they are also illegal in many countries - despite common claims to the contrary within their text.

Unsolicited Commercial Email (UCE)

Unsolicited Commercial Email is advertising material sent and received by email without the recipient either requesting such information or otherwise explicitly expressing an interest in the material advertised. Since many Internet users use a dial-up connection and pay for their online time, it costs them money to receive email. Receipt of unsolicited commercial advertising therefore costs them money and is often therefore particularly unwelcome. It should be noted that a user has not expressed an interest by the mere act of posting a news article in any particular newsgroup, or by visiting a web site, unless of course they have made a specific request for information to be emailed to them.

Unsolicited Bulk Email (UBE)

UBE is similar to the above UCE but is not attempting to sell anything. Forged Headers and / or Addresses Forging headers or messages means sending email such that its origin appears to be another user or machine, or a non-existent machine. It is also forgery to arrange for any replies to the email to be sent to some other user or machine. However, in either case, if prior permission has been granted to you by the other user or the administrators of the other machine, then there is no problem, and of course "null" reverse paths can be used as defined in the relevant email standards.

Mail Bombing

Mail bombing is the sending of multiple emails, or one large email, with the sole intent of annoying and / or seeking revenge on a fellow Internet user. It is wasteful of shared Internet resource as well as serving no value to the recipient. Due to the time taken to download it, sending a long email to sites without prior agreement can amount to denial of service, or denial of access to email at the receiving site. Note that adding binary attachments to email may increase its size considerably. If prior arrangement has not been made, the email may be extremely unwelcome.

Denial of Service Attacks

Denial of Service is any activity designed to prevent a specific host on the Internet making full and effective use of its facilities. This includes, but is not limited to:

  • Mail bombing an address in such a way to make their Internet access impossible, difficult, or costly.
  • Opening an excessive number of email connections to the same host.
  • Intentionally sending email designed to damage the receiver's systems when interpreted; for example, sending malicious programs or viruses attached to an email. sing a smarthost or email relay without authorisation to do so.

Mailing List Subscriptions

Mailing lists are schemes for distributing copies of the same email to many different people. It is not acceptable to subscribe anyone, other than a user on your own host, to any mailing list or similar service, unless their explicit permission has been given. List owners are encouraged to confirm all subscription requests by requesting confirmation from the apparent subscriber before starting to send any list email. They must ensure that unsubscribe requests are handled efficiently. Good emailing list software is available that will automate both these processes. Many reports of unsolicited bulk email turn out to be from people who were unaware that they had joined a mailing list. It is not acceptable to subscribe people to a list merely because they have visited your web site or used one of your products; the person must make an explicit request to be listed. However, some reports occur because people have genuinely forgotten that they had made such a request. If you run a mailing list you are strongly advised to keep copies of administrative requests (web logs, or emails including headers) so that you may demonstrate that subscription requests were genuine.

Illegal Content

Various Acts of Parliament make it illegal to possess or transmit certain material on a public telecommunications network, such as the telephone system. It is not acceptable to send such material by email.

Breach of Copyright or Intellectual Property

If you send copyright material or other intellectual property via email you must have permission to do so from the owner of that intellectual property.

Appendix C: Customers Websites

This Appendix is applicable to all services provided by VM Linux. There are some further Appendices applicable to particular services below. You are responsible in all respects for the content of your web site and must ensure that no applicable law is violated. You must obtain any necessary legal permission for any works that your web site may include. You will be held responsible for and accept responsibility for any defamatory, confidential, secret or other proprietary material available via your web site. VM Linux reserves the right to remove any material from a web site at our sole discretion, without prior notice and without explanation. A web site may not be used to offer, advertise or distribute any of the following types of material:

  • software for sending 'spam' (bulk emails, excessive news postings, etc.);
  • illegal material
  • lists of email addresses, except where all the owners of the addresses have given you explicit permission
  • any collection of personal data other than in accordance with the Data Protection Acts 1984 and 1998.

You must comply with the Data Protection Acts 1984 and 1998 (and any amendments or re- enactments of them) regarding all information received, stored or communicated through the use of your web site. If your web site contains material that may cause general offence, a clearly readable warning page must be shown before any such offensive material is displayed. To avoid doubt, this means that your top-level web page (usually index.htm or index.html) must not contain any adult material or other material that may generally offend. Where part of a web site forms an independent area that is not linked to by a topmost page, it will be considered as a site in its own right when considering whether appropriate warnings are present. Warnings are also required where the material is referenced directly from a web site, with no intervening pages, or where the use of frames makes the material appear to be part of a web site. All of the web pages on a web site are considered to be publicly visible and may be downloaded by any person, whether or not they are linked from any central contents or home page. However, specific mechanisms are available as part of some services to prevent unauthorized access. Pages protected in such a manner will not be considered to be public. Web sites may not be advertised by you, or by another person, using techniques that would be classified as "abuse" if they were carried out from a VM Linux account including, but not limited to, bulk emailing and excessive news posting. Such action will be treated under the VM Linux AUP as if it had been done from the VM Linux account. Web sites must display a valid, up-to-date email contact address for the person responsible for the site. The use of the generic address of "webmaster" is acceptable for this purpose. This address must appear on the top-level page or be easily locatable from the top-level page.