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Qwest Suspends Grandma's Internet Connection

Cathi "Cat" Paradiso, a 53-year-old grandmother from Pueblo, Colorado, was accused of illegally downloading 18 films and TV shows, including "Zombieland," "Harry Potter," and "South Park."

A representative from Qwest phoned Paradiso informing her of the alleged Hollywood copyright infringement, which lead to a suspension of her internet service. Paradiso was told that if she was accused to illegal activity one more time, Qwest would have to terminate her account and that other ISPs in the area would learn of her name, making it hard to sign up for new internet service.

The interesting fact underlying the entire incident is that Paradiso did not commit any of the activity that she was accused of. Yes, she was an internet user as she works from home as a technical recruiter; but she maintains that she did not download a single movie.

"Take me off your hit list," Paradiso wrote in a January 15 e-mail plea to some of the studios who had accused her, as quoted by CNet. "I have never downloaded a movie. Period... You'll need to admit you made a mistake and move on to the correct perpetrator... I am saying this once more: My computer is not a toy. My livelihood depends on my ISP's reliability. Look for the perpetrator and leave my service alone."

CNet made inquiries into Paradiso's case, which led Qwest to dig deeper. A technician last week discovered that Paradiso's network was compromised, which absolves her of the downloading activity. Of course, the question remains whether the one employing internet service is responsible for the type of activity that happens on the account.