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JustHost pulls plug on Fitwatch for violating TOS?

Wed, 17th November 2010, 19:00

A British website briefly removed by webhosting provider JustHost after a request by the Met Police's e-crime unit is now back online.

The site's hosting provider JustHost suspended the account after an email from the Met, but hardly had the plug been pulled than the site sprouted up in hundreds of other places, from Facebook to dozens of blogs and other sites.

Fitwatch.org.uk says that JustHost have not relented so we just moved to another host."

Interestingly, it is being reported that JustHost in a statement claims “that it can not divulge customer information without a subpoena or court order.”

JustHost then continues "However, when we become aware of improper activity by one of our customers using a hosted site, which would be a violation of our Terms of Service (TOS) governing the web sites, we take such situations seriously, we investigate promptly, and we take appropriate action."

I was curious which Term they violated so I checked the JustHost TOS. I am still in the dark! (We have requested comment from JustHost)

The Fitwatch blog's latest post says “We’re back, and we’re stronger than ever.” Thanks the Met Police for all the publicity!

On Monday night we received notification that our site had been suspended due to “attempting to pervert the course of justice” due to our posting offering advice to the Millbank students. Whilst the email requesting the site be closed on the basis it was being used for “criminal activity” came from DI Paul Hoare, from the Police Central e-crime Unit, the authorisation to close was given much closer to home, by acting Detective Inspector Will Hodgeson. Hodgeson, who was involved in the first Fitwatch case, and has sat through many of our trials and appeals, evidently finally had enough and decided to shut us down.

HostJury has requested the name of the new host (not really expecting a reply). Considering Fitwatch is likely getting a healthy traffic flow, it does appear the site is loading quickly when pinged from various global locations.

The Met should read the post

Cease and Desist” Takedown Letters can add buzz

 Update

Sam from JustHost has responded that management will review our information request and respond shortly.

Another Update

Management from JustHost has responded (in a timely fashion no less). While the answer was rather vague and generic in nature and almost begs to have some interpation and spin just to make it applicable to the subject matter at hand... I will refrain and be thankful for a reponse

Response from JustHost 

We understand that you have requested certain customer information or other confidential information.  Please be advised that such materials are subject to privacy policies, and are held in confidence in absence of a subpoena or other legal process. Of course, we would be happy to comply with any legally binding subpoena, court order or other legal process.

As you may know, we are a web hosting company.  We are not responsible for the content or links posted by our customers who create and place content on websites that we host.  We further do not "monitor" the websites that we host or prescreen the content placed by customers on their sites.  However, when we become aware of improper activity by one of our customers using a hosted site, which would be a violation of our Terms of Service (TOS) governing the web sites, we take such situations seriously, we investigate promptly, and we take appropriate action.

Should you have further questions, please contact us.  [end]