Internet service provider (ISP)

An Internet service provider (ISP) is an organisation or company that provides many different services for accessing, using, or participating in an Internet network.  An ISP delivers services to individuals, commercial users, and organisations. 

In addition to providing access to the Internet, ISPs may also provide software packages (such as browsers), e-mail accounts, and a personal Web site or home page. 

Internet Service Providers can be different types of organisations:

  • Commercial entities (usually big companies),
  • Other private, SMEs or even micro providers, a good example is free Internet in the HORECA industry,
  • Community-owned and council, e.g. city internet,
  • Non-profit organisations, and others.

ISPs can host Web sites for businesses and can also build the Web sites themselves. ISPs are all connected through network access points, public network facilities on the Internet backbone.