Q: How Does the Filtering Work?

A: ClearSail's filtering is Server Based, not computer software; therefore, there is no need for our customers to continuously update their software. ClearSail searches the Internet everyday and adds to our website blocking list. Thousands of websites are located and filtered each day. Our comprehensive filtering solution includes: (1) the block list of known URL's, (2) blocking of known pornographic hosting services, (3) the blocking of keywords in the url, and (4) the blocking of keyword searches. There are MILLIONS of blocked websites as a result of ClearSail's intense filtering capability. Additionally, newsgroups are blocked because of the uncontrollable amount of pornography contained within them.

Q: Is filtering "FOOL-PROOF"?

A: Due to the high level of objectionable sites appearing on-line every day, the answer is no. We believe that about 98% of all objectionable sites have been located and successfully blocked; however, there will be websites from time to time missed or are brand new. It's usually a very short period of time before ClearSail finds and eliminates access to these websites. And in the event a customer finds a site that they feel should be blocked or unblocked, they may simply eMailing ClearSail and request a review. We will review and take the appropriate action with the site within 24 hours when the website meets the filtering criteria, as set forth in our Filtering Policy.

Q: Does ClearSail block all the sites they review?

A: No, only those fitting our Filtering Policy.

Q: How often is the filtering data base updated?

A: 1 to 2 times daily, M-F.

Q: What if Parents / Administrators want to go to a blocked site?

A: If an authorized user needs to view a blocked site, they can override the filter using a unique administrative/ parental password (this is an option that is no charge). ClearSail provides this feature WITHOUT the need to purchase 2 separate accounts. The override is enabled for a specified amount of time (1-240 minutes) and then the bypass reverts back to filtered access. Additionally, an eMail is sent to the parent / administrator of the account each time the bypass is activated (this feature can be optionally deleted). ClearSail also has a security procedure for bypass passwords requests. Unauthorized persons attempting to obtain a password will be reported to the owner of the account.

Q: What if I don't want a filtering bypass?

A: The filtering bypass password is completely optional, and you may request to "never" have a password provided.

Q: Do I really need a filtering bypass?

A: This decision to have a bypass is completely up to the customer. Approximately 75% of our customers obtain a bypass. This way the parent / administrator has "total control" over the account. Many customers find the need to bypass and allow their children to view blocked websites, while the parents can supervise them. Blocked websites containing "chat" and "graphic medical photos" are just some examples. Additionally, ClearSail blocks websites that contain gambling, alcoholic beverages, and tobacco products. Adults may want to view a site on fine wines, cigars, or Las Vegas that would otherwise be blocked.

Q: How does the filtering bypass feature time-out?

A: The bypass time is programmable by the authorized user. If more than an 4 hours is required, the bypass process simply can be repeated.

Q: How does ClearSail's filtering differ from software I can buy?

A: While software that resides on a computer will be somewhat effective, it cannot provide the thoroughness of ClearSail's filtering. We believe that software alone blocks only about 80%, where ClearSail's filtering solution is about 98% effective. Also, ClearSail's filtering is performed from our servers, therefore the filtering cannot be removed or uninstalled like software. And Software that can be purchased requires updating constantly (almost every day) to give the filtering capability ClearSail provides.

Q: Does the filtering process slow down the access to the Internet?

A: Very slightly, but only by milliseconds - so it is not noticable!.

Q: Can I use any browser with the filtering that I want to use?

A: Yes, any browser that is configurable to run through a proxy. These include Microsoft Internet Explorer 3 and 4, Netscape Navigator 4, Mosaic, Web Explorer, and some others.

Q: Can't my proxy settings on my browser simply be turned off to circumvent ClearSail's filtering?

A: No. All requests for websites must go through the proxy filter settings in order to download a webpage.


Q: Am I going to get busy signals when trying to access ClearSail?

A: ClearSail has an excellent customer to modem ratio. It currently is a 7:1. This means that for every 7 customers there is 1 modem. The chances that you should get a busy signal is very rare, and if a busy occurs, it is probably a bad telephone connection and you should immediately redail. If it is truly busy, more than likely the system is busy due to a public tragedy, big news event, or super bowl Sunday when the station advises for everyone to checkout the NFL website. These occurrences are rare.

Q: What is the minimum modem speed I should use?

A: ClearSail recommends that no modems be used under the speed of 56K. It is recommended that you consider upgrading to a 56K x2 or v.90 modem. These modems will perform approximately twice the speed as a 28.8, and with prices coming down, most major computer stores offer 56K v.90 modems for under $50.00.

Q: I have purchased a 56K modem, why can I connect at 56,000?

A: Regional Bell Operating Companies are sometimes tariffed and will only allow (with perfect telephone line conditions) 53K. Tariffs are established by the FCC and by state Public Utility Commissions. Because analog lines are a little noisy (static), your modem will automatically slow down to accommodate for noise. It is normal for 56K modems to connect between 39 - 51K. This is still very good performance.

Q: Should I get an ISDN or DSL line?

A: When considering an ISDN or DSL line, know the pros and cons. Cost: ISDN through the telephone company costs an average of $60 / mo., plus a connection fee, and DSL is usually about $45 / mo. Sometimes connection fees are discounted when signing a one year term agreement (check with your provider). With ISDN, you should get 2 to 3 times faster downloads, and DSL is generally 10 - 20 times faster than dial up.

Q: I have experienced drop-outs when connected, what's the reason?

A: In almost all cases, the telephone connection between your computer and the services has deteriorated where the modems can no longer communicate. The modem will then need to reestablish itself. If this problem persists, you will need to have your telephone company look at the quality of your telephone service.


Q: How long does it take for eMail to be delivered?

A: Usually in seconds.

Q: Is my eMail private (safe from being read)?

A: Probably as safe as the US Mail Service. It would be difficult for an eMail to be delivered to the wrong location. Those that have sensitive information being transmitted should make sure they are equipped with encryption software. Although it is always possible for a computer to be hacked or its security compromised, it is unlikely that someone could intercept an eMail. Customers who purchase items through a charge-card should make sure that they are on a secure server for maximum safety.

Q: Can I have multiple eMail addresses?

A: Yes. Your browser can be setup to have multiple users. This way everyone gets their own eMail, and each person will have a unique password for internal security. ClearSail will provide each member of your family with their own eMail address. ClearSail provides Businesses with Internet packages that provide the needed eMail addresses for employees.


Q: Can I connect through one of your out-of-town servers?

A: Yes. With your ClearSail account, you may obtain Internet access and eMail from any one of our access numbers. If you know you are planning a trip to a particular city serviced by ClearSail, just give us a call to activate.

Q: Can I recommend my friends and family to ClearSail if they're in a different city?

A: Yes. As long as they're in ClearSail's local dialing area within the cities listed in our Nationwide directory, we can service them. All local dialing area numbers need to be checked to verify that no long distance charges will apply. And anytime you refer a new customer to ClearSail, we'll credit your account a referral fee.