Here’s where we round up all the Aussie news around the ‘net about the ‘net, every week. Check in here for a quick primer on everything from piracy to privacy to data retention and the NBN.
Exetel is one of Australia’s leaner ISPs, with a long history of providing low-cost ADSL internet services to users that don’t require the full-service customer support of providers like Telstra or iiNet. It’s also had a history of telling its less profitable customers to leave and find another Internet service provider — and this tactic doesn’t always sit well with Australia’s consumer watchdog.
According to the ACCC, Exetel told some of its fixed-term ADSL customers in mid-2015 that they would have to move a different plan or have their service terminated, breaching Australian consumer law. [Gizmodo]
NBN has revealed the 17 suburbs where Optus and Telstra have begun hybrid fibre-coaxial construction trials, ahead of a March product release. The construction trials are separate from the 300-premise pilot program currently underway on the Optus HFC network in Redcliffe and Scarborough in Queensland.
The trials are designed to allow Optus and Telstra to test the construction processes for lead-ins to premises passed by their HFC networks where a customer doesn’t currently have a connection to the network. [iTnews]
In response to a Freedom of Information request, the Australian government has released a partially-redacted list of Commonwealth agencies that have applied for access to the metadata retained by Australia’s telecommunications providers as part of the Telecommunications Interception and Access Act. There are over five dozen government entities that want to look through your mobile, internet and home phone records, ostensibly to uncover criminal activity.
Data retention has been in force in Australia since October last year, when the law to enable it passed our Senate by a majority of 43 votes to 16. While telcos are required to store customer data for a minimum of two years for access by registered and sanctioned agencies, there is ongoing confusion over the requirements for that retention.
The nation’s largest telco Telstra today said regulatory decisions made by the Government were forcing it to install brand new copper in new greenfields estates, rather than the next-generation fibre-optic cables which many Australians would expect in new developments.
The Department of Communications recently published new statistics which show that Telstra has deployed brand new copper to hundreds of new development premises around Australia as they are being built. [Delimiter]