What is Mandatory Data Retention and How does it affect me?

Australian Parliment is currently debating implementing laws to compel telecommunications and internet companies to keep customer data — namely metadata — for at least two years. Metadata is background data recorded by devices such as phones, laptops and tablets. In the case of phones it could include the time and duration of a phone call but not the content.

  • Phone calls: detailed records of phone calls you make and receive, including the two numbers. If a mobile phone is involved, that will include the location of that phone, resulting in a detailed record of your location and movements being collected.
  • Email: detailed records of who you’re sending emails to and receiving them from.
  • Web Browsing: This information will allow the police and ASIO to identify who has visited specific websites that are of interest to them. It will also allow copyright owners (via subpoena) to identify people they believe are infringing their copyright, by downloading or file-sharing.
What else do i have to worry about?

Storing data is expensive and the corporations and businesses that are being forced to retain this information aren’t going to foot the bill so that means you are. One estimate is your internet bill alone with increase more than $100.00 per year.

What can i do about Mandatory data retention?

If the laws pass there’s not alot you can do about the extra charges you’re going to get from your service providers but if you’re concerned about your privacy – use a VPN.