ACN Acceptable Use Policy

I. Policy Introduction

ACN is committed to compliance with laws and regulations governing the use of the Internet and phone services, and to preserving for all of its customers the ability to use ACN's services and the Internet without interference or harassment from other users. This ACN Acceptable Use Policy (this “AUP”) forms a part of and is incorporated into your Agreement for Services with ACN. When using the Services, including facilities or networks and any products, content, applications or services in conjunction with the Services, you must comply with all applicable laws and ACN’s policies, rules, limits, and terms and conditions, including those contained in this AUP and elsewhere in your Agreement. Any violation of this AUP directly or indirectly by you or any user of your Services will constitute a violation of the terms of your Agreement, and may result in the limitation or suspension of your Services, and/or the termination of your Agreement. Capitalized terms used in this AUP but not otherwise defined herein will have the meanings prescribed to such terms elsewhere in your Agreement.

II. Usage Limitations

All Services are subject to the restrictions set forth in this AUP, including those Services with features that are designated as “unlimited”. Your use of the Services is also subject to any usage limits specified for the Service plan you select. If you exceed your plan’s usage limit, you may be subject to additional usage charges as and if specified in your plan, or all or any part of your Service may be suspended as provided herein.

A. Intended Use of Services

Certain Service plans are designed for residential use only, and such Services are intended solely for your personal and non-commercial use. Other Service plans are offered to businesses, and such Services are intended solely for internal use in a business environment. Acceptable use of the Services only includes use of the Services for their intended purpose. You may not use, reproduce, distribute, sell, resell or otherwise exploit the Services or ACN-provided content or materials for any commercial purposes, including without limitation operation of an Internet service provider business, or hosting servers for or providing internet access or phone service to third parties that are not users at your residence or in the ordinary course of your business.

B. Excessive Use of Services

ACN may, in its sole discretion, restrict, suspend or terminate all or any part of your Services if ACN determines that your use is excessive, meaning that it significantly deviates from normal applicable usage patterns for the intended use of the Services, or is likely to improperly restrict, inhibit, or degrade any other user's use of the Services, or that your use represents an unusually large burden on ACN’s network or the network of any underlying provider, or our ability to deliver the Services.

C. Specific Usage Limitations Applicable To ACN Digital Phone Services
  1. You are limited to three (3) simultaneous calls under this Service with a maximum duration of six (6) hours per call each, after which time the call(s) will be disconnected. ACN Digital Phone Service is also subject to a limit of three thousand (3,000) minutes in the aggregate during each monthly billing cycle for outgoing calls, inclusive of local and long distance calls anywhere in the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico, and for calls to international countries specified in ACN International Calling Plans.
  2. Call time to Bangladesh is limited to one thousand five hundred (1,500) minutes per service month. If you exceed this limit on Bangladesh call time, ACN may block further calls during the service month or assess you an additional per minute charge based on rates in effect from time to time and found at: http://www.acnservices.com/ca/index.html
D. Specific Usage Limitations Applicable To ACN High Speed Internet Services
  1. The Service plan that you select may include specific data usage thresholds and usage charges. If so, when you exceed your plan’s usage threshold you will be billed an additional charge per gigabyte of use at the specified rate. Details regarding your specific plan’s usage threshold and per gigabyte charge will be available when you make your plan selection and on your customer portal.
  2. The Service plan that you select may include or have an option for unlimited data. If you select unlimited data you will not be subject to a per gigabyte charge for exceeding a specified data usage threshold. However, please note that plans with unlimited data are still subject to the restrictions on use set forth in the Agreement, including limitations for excessive use.
  3. For Customers where Shaw Cable is the Underlying Provider: If your Service plan does not expressly include usage based billing with defined usage thresholds and/or an unlimited data option, use of three hundred (300) gigabytes or more per month is considered to be excessive for plans with speeds up to 30 Mbps, and use of four hundred (400) gigabytes or more per month is considered to be excessive for plans with speeds of 60 Mbps. Such excessive use may result in Service suspension.

III. Prohibited Actions

ACN prohibits use of the Services in any ways that are unlawful, interfere with use of ACN's network or the Internet, infringe intellectual property rights, result in the publication using the Services of threatening or offensive material, constitute Spam/E-mail/Usenet abuse, or present security or privacy risks.

A. Unlawful Activities and Inappropriate Use
  1. The Services shall not be used in connection with any criminal or civil violation of any applicable local, state, provincial, federal, national or international law, treaty, court order, ordinance, regulation or administrative rule, or to participate in any fraudulent activities. Any such use may be referred to the appropriate authorities for investigation and/or prosecution.
  2. You shall not attempt to use the Services in any manner that circumvents usage thresholds or other intended limitations.
  3. You shall not use the Services to impersonate any person or entity, or to forge headers or otherwise manipulate identifiers in order to disguise the origin of any content transmitted through the Services.
  4. You shall not tamper with or alter the Services, including any serial number or other identifier of your Services or Equipment.
  5. You shall not attempt to use the Services to violate a person’s privacy, including without limitation port scanning a person’s computer or wireless device without that person’s consent, nor shall you use any tools designed to facilitate such violations.
B. Interference
  1. You shall not engage in any activity that improperly restricts, inhibits, or degrades any communications network or any other subscriber’s use of the Services or any person’s access to the Internet, or that represents an unusually large burden on ACN’s networks inconsistent with the intended use of the Services. This prohibition includes, without limitation, posting, uploading, transmitting or otherwise disseminating data containing a virus, lock, key, bomb, worm, Trojan horse or other harmful, limiting, destructive or debilitating feature, distributing mass or unsolicited e-mail (i.e. “Spam”) or other messages, or otherwise generating levels of traffic sufficient to impede other users’ ability to send or receive data or otherwise access and fully use the Services.
  2. You must ensure that your activity does not improperly restrict, inhibit, disrupt, degrade or impede ACN’s ability to deliver and monitor the Services or any transmissions of data, and you shall not interfere with any network facilities, telecommunications service provider, Internet user or host, including, without limitation, through denial of service attacks, overloading a service, hacking, or otherwise attempting to crash or wrongfully take over a host or system.
C. Intellectual Property

The Services shall not be used to transmit, post, upload, download, store, disseminate or make available any content or otherwise engage in any activity that infringes the intellectual property rights or privacy rights of others. ACN reserves the right to restrict any use of the Services alleged to violate the rights of another party; however, ACN is not obligated to investigate the validity of such claims. Thus, while you consent to ACN's right to suspend your Services if you are alleged to be violating another's rights, you also acknowledge and agree that ACN may in its sole discretion, permit the continuing activity despite allegations of infringement. ACN will not be liable for any losses, claims, or expenses arising from any such action or inaction prior to ACN’s receipt of legally binding directives or final disposition of the claim.

D. Offensive or Threatening Content

The Services shall not be used to host, post, transmit, or disseminate any content or material that is threatening, harassing, obscene, indecent, pornographic, hateful, malicious, racist, defamatory, libelous, treasonous, excessively violent or promotes the use of violence, or provides instruction, information or assistance in causing or carrying out violence against any government, organization, group or individual, or provides guidance, information or assistance with respect to causing damage or security breaches to the Services, ACN, ACN's network or any other telecommunications service provider, Internet user, or host.

E. Spam/E-mail/Usenet Abuse

The use of the Services in connection with any Spam/E-mail/Usenet abuse is prohibited. Examples of Spam/E-mail/Usenet abuse include but are not limited to the following activities:

  • using another site's mail server to relay mail without the express permission of the site;
  • using IP addresses that you do not have a right to use;
  • collecting the responses from unsolicited electronic messages;
  • maintaining a site that is advertised via unsolicited electronic messages, regardless of the origin of the unsolicited electronic messages;
  • sending electronic messages with petitions for signatures, or any chain mail related materials;
  • sending unsolicited electronic messages with charity requests;
  • sending messages that are harassing or malicious, or otherwise could reasonably be predicted to interfere with another party's quiet enjoyment of the Services or the Internet (e.g., through language, frequency, size or otherwise);
  • sending bulk (i.e., twenty-five (25) or more recipients) electronic messages without identifying, within the message, a reasonable means of opting out from receiving additional messages from the sender;
  • sending electronic messages that inaccurately identify the sender, the sender's return address, the e-mail address of origin, or other information contained in the subject line or header;
  • distributing or using software designed to promote the sending of unsolicited bulk electronic messages;
  • using distribution lists containing addresses that include those who have opted out;
  • posting a single message, or messages similar in content, that could reasonably be expected to provoke complaints, to more than ten (10) online forums or newsgroups;
  • posting messages to or canceling or superseding messages on an online forum or newsgroup in a manner that violates the rules of the forum or newsgroup or that contain forged header information; and
  • sending bulk electronic messages in quantities that exceed standard industry norms or that create the potential for disruption of the ACN network or of the networks with which ACN interconnects.
F. Security Violations

The Services may not be used to interfere with, to gain unauthorized access to, or to otherwise violate the security of, ACN's or another's server, network, personal computer, network access or control devices, software or data, or other system, or to attempt to do any of the foregoing. Examples of security violations include but are not limited to:

  • intercepting, interfering with or redirecting e-mail intended for third parties, or any form of network monitoring, scanning or probing, or any other action for the unauthorized interception of data or harvesting of e-mail addresses;
  • attempting to attack, breach, circumvent or test the vulnerability of the user authentication or security of any host, network, server, personal computer, network access or control devices, software or data (except in the case of authorized legitimate network security operations);
  • using any program, file, script, command, or the transmission of any message or content of any kind, designed to interfere with a terminal session or with access to or the use of the Internet or any other means of communication;
  • distributing or using tools designed to compromise security, including, without limitation, cracking tools, password guessing programs, packet sniffers or network probing tools (except in the case of authorized legitimate network security operations);
  • falsifying packet header, sender, or User information whether in whole or in part to mask the identity of the sender, originator or point of origin; and
  • distributing viruses, worms, Trojan horses or other harmful software.

IV. Monitoring

ACN reserves the right, but not the obligation, to monitor or investigate the use of the Services and any content (excluding voice) that is transmitted using the Services, and may access or preserve content or information as required or permitted by law. Use of the Services constitutes consent to such monitoring and investigation. It is your responsibility to make users of your Services aware of this, and if you or any of your users do not agree to such monitoring and investigation then such individual should not use the Services. Information derived from system and security monitoring may be used as a basis for administrative, disciplinary, or criminal proceedings.

V. Internet Traffic Management Policies

ACN reserves the right to manage the Services in order to ensure the integrity of ACN’s network and optimize efficiency, including by rate limiting, capping, and other permissible bandwidth management and traffic shaping techniques. Furthermore, your Services are subject to the Internet Traffic Management Policies that ACN’s underlying providers for such Services may from time to time implement on their respective networks, including without limitation the following:

A. For Internet Services Where Shaw Is The Underlying Provider

Shaw uses traffic management policies to ensure proportional access to its network for all Shaw Internet customers. Some Peer-to-Peer (P2P) applications used for non real-time file sharing can consume a disproportionate amount of upstream bandwidth causing disruption to other customers on Shaw's network. Shaw's traffic management policies were introduced to quickly address any upstream congestion caused by these P2P applications while standard network expansion activities are undertaken to increase the bandwidth availability for all users.

Shaw's traffic management policies come into effect only if upstream network congestion occurs on a network segment. If congestion occurs, the traffic management policies reduce the amount of upstream bandwidth available for P2P applications completing non real-time file transfer activity to 80 kbps per end-user.

Shaw's traffic management policies do not affect download speeds and will not affect real-time interactive activities such as on-line gaming, banking, e-mail or VoIP services. For the majority of Shaw customers the Internet experience is unaffected by Shaw’s traffic management policies and both upstream and downstream bandwidth will be available to ensure the full operation of any application.

The traffic management policies implemented by Shaw use IP addresses to make real-time traffic management decisions in relation to Shaw's network. Since IP addresses have the potential to be linked to an individual's customer account, IP addresses could be considered personal information. The traffic management policies implemented by Shaw do not involve capturing, storing or archiving this information in any way. Since IP addresses have the potential to be linked to an individual’s Customer account, IP addresses could be considered personal information.

B. For Internet Services Where Videotron Is The Underlying Provider

Videotron applies management measures only to upload traffic (i.e. from the user to the Internet) for certain plans, and under certain conditions (see below).

Why does Videotron use Internet traffic management measures?

Videotron’s mission is to offer the best online experience to as many users as possible. Because the upload speed for certain plans is high, Videotron uses traffic management measures to prevent some modems from slowing down the service, even momentarily.

What kind of traffic does Videotron target?

Videotron does not target any particular type of traffic, nor any specific applications or protocols such as peer-to-peer file sharing. Only data uploads made under specific high speed plans are subject to traffic management. Download traffic is not managed.

When and how is traffic managed on the Videotron network?

Every 15 minutes, a system verifies the traffic rate of each upstream channel (typically, one upstream channel serves a few dozen modems).

If the traffic rate exceeds the threshold above which congestion occurs, the system identifies the modems used with certain high speed plans that are uploading a large amount of data. The upload capacity of these modems is then given a low-priority rating. However, if the congestion persists or increases, then the upload speed of these modems may slow down. When the amount of data uploaded by the modem is diminished or the traffic on that channel reverts to a normal enough rate that congestion is no longer an issue, the upload capacity will go back to its usual priority. Even when they are no longer prioritized, modems used with certain high speed plans can use up all the upload bandwidth that other modems are not using, at a speed equivalent to these modems’ nominal speed. The measures described above are implemented on an ongoing basis.

VI. Customer Responsibilities

You are liable for all use and misuse of your Services, including, without limitation, liability for any content or materials disseminated through your Services. You agree to take reasonable steps to prevent unauthorized access to your Services by maintaining the basic security of your systems, including implementation of necessary security protocols and system updates to prevent use by others in a manner that violates this AUP. Examples of failure to provide basic security include, but are not limited to, improperly securing a mail server so that it may be used by others to distribute Spam, or improperly securing an FTP server so that it may be used by others to illegally distribute copyrighted material. You agree to promptly take corrective actions on vulnerable or exploited systems to prevent abuse.

VII. Violations

ACN reserves the right to block, refuse, remove, interrupt, delete, or disallow any content and/or transmissions that it determines in the exercise of its reasonable discretion would constitute a criminal offence, give rise to civil liability, or otherwise violate any municipal, provincial, federal or international law, order or regulation, this AUP, or the other terms and conditions contained in your Agreement for Services, but does not hereby assume any obligation to do so or any liability for failure to do so.

ACN may provide you with written notice via e-mail or otherwise of an AUP violation so that such violation may be corrected without impacting your Services. ACN reserves the right, however, to act immediately and without notice to suspend or terminate all or any part of the Services in response to a court order or government notice that certain conduct must be stopped or when ACN reasonably determines: (1) that ACN may be exposed to sanctions or prosecution; (2) that such violation may cause harm to or interfere with the integrity or normal operations or security of ACN's network or networks with which ACN is interconnected or interfere with use of the Services or the Internet by another individual or entity; or (3) that such violation otherwise presents imminent any risk of harm to ACN or any other individual or entity.

The foregoing rights are not exclusive remedies, and ACN may pursue other remedies and take other actions it deems appropriate to respond to violations of this AUP. ACN’s failure to enforce any term or condition contained in this AUP shall not be construed as a waiver of any right to do so at any time. If any portion of this AUP is held to be invalid or unenforceable, that portion will be construed consistent with applicable law as nearly as possible, and the remaining portions will remain in full force and effect. This AUP shall be exclusively governed by, and construed in accordance with, the governing law provision set out in the Agreement. The terms contained in this AUP are intended to prevent the misuse of the Services at any time and will survive any termination of the Agreement and/or all or any portion of the Services.

VIII. Incident Reporting

Any complaints regarding the violation of this AUP should be directed to the designated agent listed below. Where possible, include details that would assist ACN in investigating and resolving the complaint (i.e. expanded headers and a copy of the offending transmission).

Designated Agent:
Office of the General Counsel
legalnotices@acninc.com
1000 Progress Place, Concord, NC 28025-2449
704-260-3000 (phone) | 704-260-3304 (fax)