Hello all your hosters, i need a advice what you would do in the following case:
I am running a small webhosting company or at least that's what i am trying. I have to partners actually.
So, at Saturday, 07 i got an order of an dedicated server for $298/month and $99 setup. The guy paid his setup fee per cc and i ordered the server at a local vendor. Because they didn't have any on stock i had to look around and found another vendor which could deliver the server in a short time after building it. Unfortunately the server was more expensive and i had to ask back, if the client wanted to go ahead with the higher cost giving him some facilities like more bandwidth and others.
But there was something suspicious on it because he signed up with, let me say "Mister Nobody" (This is a fictious name, of course). When i got his answers back by email, it came in as from "Mister Suspicious" (fictious as well) saying ok to everything but he needs his server as soon as possible (he signed up with one name and he had another name in his email client?,
) We gave him the date when we would be able to deliver it to him. The time went by, the cc transaction was accepted (we are using worldpay), the server came in, we set it up and sent an email telling him that his server is ready and we are waiting for his first month payment. Now comes the second suspicious part:
First he always showed hurry and when it came down to any action done by him, it was always friday or saturday and he didn't reply until monday. So, monday came and payment was made on his account but from another "Mister Whatthe****" saying he's his cousin and asking the root login and password to be sent to his cousins email.
The payment by cc from "Mister Whatthe****" for the server was accepted
so we routed an IP block to his server and sent the root login to "Mister Playboy" (Mister Nobody and Mister Suspicious before!). He changed his name in his email client again but at least the fist name was the same as the one with which he made the cc payment when he signed up with us.
Time went by and we got an email (a part time worker helping us in peak times) from "Mister Playboy" asking to reverse his ip. He was told that he can do this himself running the DNS on his own server but to look at the manual of the server and to ask back if he don't know how to do it.
, but it was actually stupid what the part time worker has told him because "Mister Playboy's" request to reverse a DNS for him showed already what he wanted to do and anybody else here would have mentioned our TOS.
The big **** came two days later:
We got an advise from some server owners and from another network (Operating in the same NOC) that there appears to be a problem in our network, because other server owners couldn't accesss their IP's and they checked theirs already.
We monitor servers for our clients to get their servers back up if they appear to be down before the client actually know about it.
So a alert was ringing and guess who's server it was?
Right, it was "Mister Playboy's" server. We went in and found out that he did not only take the ip block we assigned him, but from another clients!!!!
We shut the server down and sent an email to Mister Playboy telling him that we'll look at his server within the next hour and that we found out what he had done and that we have to go into the server to cancel the IP's which belong to other customers. And in the future PLEASE ONLY to use his assigned IP's.
We went into the server about 2 hours later (it was a very busy day) to find out that we could not cancel these unauthorized IP's from the control panel because the where some customization made to the server making it impossible to control anything from the control panel. He had taken the IP's not from our customers, but from another ISP operating in the same NOC and using the same backbone. The server was that modified to provide shell hosting (strictly forbidden in our TOS). Load average was 21.97. We made screenshots and sent them to him by email along a message that we have to restore the server to the factory setting and that his server will be back online within the next three hours and told him to look at our TOS and abide to it. This time we wouldn't charge him for the server restore but the next time he would face a fee of $99 per tech hour and that he can hold responsible for damages caused to the network(s). And he's paying $50 less than other clients for the same server!
As i said before, it was a very busy day and his server was up and running 18 hours after discovering the disaster.
We sent an email to Mister Playboy telling him that his server was successfully restored to the factory settings but before sending him the login we asked him to print out our TOS, signing it and to fax it back to us along with a copy of his id card or passport.
. Next time he would face $99 per tech hour and/or disconnection of the server (of course it will be disconnected in these cases) and immidiate cancellation of the contract (monthly). In case if he want's to discontinue with our services we would have to charge him the the first month for the damage and wasted time caused of his server administration.
We got an email back asking for the login because the one he's got don't work
We sent him the same email again asking for the documents by fax and since then (saturday midday, yesterday) there's no answer from him. Ok, this was happen last weekend (when we asked for the first payment) as well, so we will see what's going to happen tomorrow, monday. I forgot to say that we know that he got our emails because we got the receipt back as delivered.
But he only was asking back when he could "access his server, it seems to be down" and another one "when could we guys respond him"
(When we had the receipeds that he got the other mails).
But this story doesn't end here.
When the problem was happen i tried to phone him up but there where no person "Mister Playboy" at this number. So i made a reverse lookup of his phone and there's no entry for him. I checked his "Cousin", Mister Whatthe****, and his cc transaction also was accepted, the address was different, but the phone number and the email of him was the same as the one of his "Cousin" and because i tried to phone him i know that it's wrong. So i made an whois lookup, only to see the same data i already had. I tried to lookup the domain at which he offered shell accounts and this domain is registered to a completely different person in a different country (non US).
I'll see what's going to happen tomorrow and i'll tell you all. But i would like to know how you would react in this situation and what you would do. How are the possibilities for me to keep the money (it was really heavy this case) if he doesn't answer and open's a chargeback? Our TOS is clear and it was one of the heaviest violations we ever had.
Please post your comments. Thx for your time.