Service Level Agreement
Genius Systems Lab (GSYS Ltd) is pleased to support it’s web hosting services with this Service Level Agreement (“SLA”). This SLA is incorporated into Customer’s Agreement with us, and made a part of it. Terms not defined in this SLA have the definitions set out in the Agreement. The remedies set out in this SLA are Customer’s sole and exclusive remedy for issues covered by the SLA. While we will not modify this SLA arbitrarily, we may do so from time-to-time. Should we make a change to this SLA, we shall notify Customer (e.g. by email or by notification in the Customer control panel). The notification will set out the effective date of any changes. It is important that Customer review the SLA completely.
Genius Systems Limited (GSYS Ltd) will provide service availability of 99.95% (“Service Availability”), calculated on a calendar month basis.
Genius Systems Limited (GSYS Ltd) Service Level Agreement sets out the performance you can expect from us. The following list highlights the key elements described in our SLA:
- Availability of our services.
- Uptime guarantees in relation to our services.
- Remedies for systems failures.
- Procedures for daily operations.
If you subscribe to a website maintenance or hosting plan you hereby agree to our SLA which is posted on our website. The remedies contained in this SLA are your sole and exclusive remedies for any issues addressed herein. We may update this SLA without prior notice, in our sole discretion, and without affecting your rights as a consumer under applicable law.
1. Uptime and Downtime
a. We have a “zero 9’s” guarantee with our Hosting service, because there aren’t any 9’s in 100% . We guarantee 100% uptime for all sites on our Hosting plan. For each hour (or fraction thereof) you experience a compensable outage, we will compensate you 1 day of hosting costs. Scheduled maintenance is not included in the monthly uptime calculation.
b. For websites unable to leverage our Reliant Hosting plan and are hosted by a single-server solution, we guarantee 99.95% uptime, calculated at the end of each month. For each hour (or fraction thereof) of outage beyond 0.1% downtime, we will compensate the impacted customer for 1 day of hosting costs.
c. Scheduled maintenance outages and outages during our standard maintenance window of 1AM – 3AM PST will not be included in the monthly uptime calculation and outages within this window are not compensable.
d. Our automation monitors all hosting infrastructure and their hosted websites. If our monitoring solution discovers a website or infrastructure component is not functioning, our 24/7 support staff will be alerted and will begin working on the problem regardless of whether a customer has an open ticket.
e. We consider a compensable outage to have begun at the time our monitoring system sends an outage alert email to our support staff, or the customer opens an incident ticket reporting the problem. The incident must also be verified by us to ensure the website is completely unresponsive to requests and is not a localized issue to a specific network, web browser, or system.
f. If your site serves a specific critical function that you would like to be monitored 24/7, our custom monitoring solutions are available. Custom monitoring for your website will mean that specific pages are tested using simulated user input and the website’s response is checked against an expected value. If this value is not as expected, our support staff will be called out. Custom monitoring is available at a surcharge or included in some plans.
2. Uptime and Downtime
a. Hosting (Standard): Thanks to our innovative architecture that many of our customers enjoy, maintenance such as server or WordPress updates can be done at no impact to your users. We can achieve this by having multiple web-servers serving your website and updating servers one-at-a-time. On the extremely rare occasion we need to schedule downtime for maintenance or to significantly revise our hosting architecture running your website, we will notify you of the work to be done and the window it will be done in at least 7 days before the work occurs.
b. Single-Server Solution: Due to specific technical requirements, your website may need to run a on single-server or dedicated server architecture. For these websites that are not able to leverage our distributed no-impact architecture, users may notice brief service interruptions (usually around 15 seconds if there is an update to apply) while WordPress and server updates are applied during our maintenance window between 1AM and 3AM PST. If scheduled maintenance is required outside of this time frame, we will notify you at least 7 days before this work occurs.
3. Website Backups
a. Every night shortly after 1AM PST, your website and database will be backed up and stored in multiple locations off of the web server.
b. If any technical issue happens or something accidentally gets deleted, we will be able to restore your site to working order from a backup taken between 1AM and 4AM PST that day.
c. Backups are kept for 30 days, so if something is accidentally deleted and is not noticed until after 30 days, we will unfortunately not be able to help restore this data.
d. Extending backups to more than 30 days is available for all sites at an additional surcharge. Please contact us if you would like to extend the lifespan of your backups beyond our 30-day default period.
4. WordPress Updates
a. WordPress Core: GSYS will perform all updates for WordPress core on a daily basis. This ensures that critical security issues will be fixed the same day WordPress makes the update available! Significant updates that don’t necessarily patch critical security issues (e.g. WP 5.0) are reviewed by our team on our internal sites before being deployed to your site.
b. WordPress Themes and Plugins: We leverage our innovative 3-environment architecture extensively for theme and plugin updates to help ensure unstable updates are caught before they make it to your public website. Our standard update procedure for themes and plugins is a weekly process that operates as follows:
- Plugin/Theme Update Day 1 – Your development environment is updated to the latest available levels for installed themes and plugins.
- Plugin/Theme Update Day 2 – Your production environment is copied to your testing environment and is then updated to the same version levels as your development environment.
- Plugin/Theme Update Day 3 – If no errors have been detected by our testing or raised by our customers, the production sites are updated to the same versions of themes and plugins as the testing and development environments.
If there is a critical security issue found in a plugin or theme in use on your website, we will update that plugin/theme the same day we hear about the vulnerability and will leverage our above approach in a compressed timeline to begin and end within 24 hours of being advised of the issue.
c. What If an Update Breaks My Site? We have taken great care in designing and testing our update process to ensure that any instability is caught as early as possible.
- We take a backup of your site immediately before it’s updated as well as test it before and after the update.
- If any update breaks your site, our automated testing and recovery process will restore your site to the backup that was taken immediately prior to the update, so you won’t wake up to find your site offline.
- Our staff will receive an alert for your site’s failed update and will notify you of the root cause and the next actions to take to ensure your site stays up to date and secure on the internet.
5. Website Security
a. Securing a website on the internet is not a job that can ever be complete. Technology is always changing and with that, come new ways to exploit it. Our architecture and systems security controls have not only been designed by CISSP-certified security staff, but are frequently being reviewed and tested by CISSP-certified security staff as well.
b. We also supplement our internal expertise with the global WordPress security expertise of the staff at WordFence by deploying the WordFence plugin to all of our sites for enhanced monitoring and protection.
c. In the event of a security issue and your site somehow becomes infected, we can restore your site to an automated backup from earlier that same day.
d. We can also blacklist IP ranges and tune caching to respond to Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks and ensure that your users can still access the information they need while our infrastructure responds and adapts to an in-progress attack.
e. Traffic for all sites hosted by GSYS is secured with strong SSL encryption. We will automatically setup, maintain, and renew certificates for your sites to help prevent your users falling victim to data snooping and man-in-the-middle attacks.
6. Website Email Service
a. Emails from your website are routed through a highly reputable mail server instead of being sent directly from our web servers to help ensure your websites’ emails don’t get flagged as spam.
b. We have developed automation to test all contact forms on supported sites daily to ensure that the information entered into your contact form gets from your website, through our outgoing mail server, and into an external testing mailbox.
c. If contact forms are mission critical for your business and you want to receive a test email every day into your inbox without having to fill out your contact form, let us know and we can set this service up for you at a surcharge.
d. If a failure to send email from your site is detected, you will be notified and we will work with you to resolve this issue for your site.
7. Technical Support
a. GSYS will provide free technical support for issues related to functionality or features of our services. Our technical support is available for all clients and is provided on an as-is, as available basis.
b. All technical support requests must be sent via our secure website ticket form or by email to email@example.com.
c. We will not provide telephone support for any technical support issues unless we deem it necessary in order to resolve an issue with our services.
d. If you request technical support, you understand and agree that any modifications we perform in order to address your technical support issue may affect the functionality of your website and/or services.
e. If your request for technical support exceeds 1 hour of troubleshooting time, or is considered outside of scope (defined in section “6.h”), we reserve the right to charge additional fees for further support or alternatively deny support for your issue.
f. We may refuse any request requiring changes that would negatively impact or not be related to our ability to deliver our services.
g. The following issues are examples of issues that we consider inside the scope of our technical support services:
- Issues created by WordPress updates including themes and plugins.
- DNS administration and HTTP response errors.
- SSL certificate issues and caching issues.
- Restoring a backup from a previous day.
- Server configuration and performance issues.
h. The following issues are examples of issues that we consider outside the scope of our technical support services:
- Installation of third-party scripts/applications.
- Issues related to customizations and coding not developed by us.
- Web design and web development services.
- SEO or analytics services.
- New plugin installation and setup.
- Issues isolated to particular networks or systems that cannot be reproduced in other environments.
i. Some of our website maintenance and hosting plans may include specified hours of web design and development hours which would be applicable to subscribers of those services only.
j. f you request technical support for issues we consider outside the scope of our technical support services, we may provide you with assistance at our own discretion, subject to availability and additional fees. We will inform you, and receive your consent, prior to charging you for technical support.
k. Fees for technical support that we consider out of scope or that exceeds 1 hour of troubleshooting time must be paid in advance.
l. If the total time of your combined requests for technical support, in one month, exceed 5 hours, we reserve the right to charge additional fees or deny support for your issue.
(Updated: September 29, 2021)