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Optus Calls On Govt. To Prevent 5G Data Blowout

Optus is concerned that its data-storage costs could blow out if Australia’s data retention regime is not “reviewed and calibrated” to deal with the arrival of 5G networks.

The telco wants the Morrison Government to commission a report on the issue, believing the next-generation networking technology and architecture could create major problems for telcos.

“Low latency 5G machine-to-machine applications and network slicing, and the emergence of Internet of Things use cases, devices and capabilities, will challenge the relevance of the automatic application of the current data retention obligations and the scale of existing data storage,” Optus said in a parliamentary submission

Separately, government agencies are pushing for telcos to be forced to retain customer data for law enforcement agencies for longer than the current two-year requirement.

Under the mandatory data retention legislation that passed in 2015, companies such as Telstra, Optus and Vodafone must store customer metadata for two years.

The vast majority of data used by police and other agencies in investigating crime is less than three months old but, according to the Department of Home Affairs, agencies are pushing for the data to be held for more than two years for complex investigations.

In a submission to the joint standing committee on intelligence and security’s review of the law, the department said older data “plays a more critical role in investigations where agencies cannot rely on other forms of evidence easily”.

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