Data retention is once again on the media and political agenda, with the government last week (via attorney-general Nicola Roxon) canvassing public input on the topic. The laws which the government proposes amending include those covering interception, telecommunications, and intelligence agencies – all, of course, under that …
How much do you want to pay?
To take the London riots as an example:
Would the cost of all the data retention (which affects everyone) make it worthwhile to catch the few criminals who were using their mobile phones, or are we better off just leaving it to insurance?
This is assuming that the data collected could actually lead to the arrest of the criminals and that they could actually pay for the damage caused.
If you want to hide, just run p2p with encryption and let the police wade through the mountains of connections worldwide.
The big issue being missed here is accuracy of data retained. Whose responsibility is it when, data is wrong or missing. How server will the criminal penalties be for any errors, considering errors can be generated by faulty hard disk drives, faulty hardware, faulty power supply and of course human error and purposeful alteration or deletion.
So ISPs are required to retain data, so how many years in jail do they get when there's a lighting strike and all their servers are wiped out.
Also accuracy of data retention methods, the intent is to use this data in criminal prosecution, what penalty will the ISP pay if the data is proved in error after a person has been convicted off a crime based upon that data.
Currently ISP retain data to cover bill payment, fees in the order or 10 to 50 dollars, that's how reliable their data system has to be, when that data is used in criminal prosecution you a re talking civil risk in the order of millions of dollars, how much more to have to be spend to upgrade the reliability of the data retention systems to adequately cover that risk.
Encryption is the only option left, if you don't want your private/confidential communications data abused by corrupt ISPs/policemen/politicians.