Re: Simon is being prescient, sensible and is an exemplary Australian.
Trevor's input, while agreeably-worded, is already out-of-date. The correct time to start takin' names was at the end of the Howard era when Ruddock (as AG) basically removed all scrutiny and restrictions on access to the data that was already kept.
See, the problem is not the length of data retention per se, it's how that data is used and how strictly access to it is controlled.
If there was some way to have an absolute, iron-clad, concrete and inviolable assurance that such data would only be used for the most important reasons, and only after the strictest scrutiny - including but not limited to judicial oversight - then the length of retention of that data becomes almost a non-issue.
To be clear, I am not saying that people should have no problem with it, just that the length of the retention is irrelevant as those against it would be against ANY retention - be it for 1 year or 1 day.
So, the problem really is how the data is used, by whom, and with what oversight. Well, we know that already and the answer should disturb every Australian. The data is used by whomever wants it, for whatever purpose they want it and without anyone to monitor it. The last thing we want to do is increase the amount of our personal data available under so unsatisfactory a system.
And that's really the crux - if you (the police, ASIO, etc...) want MORE data under the appeal that you are prevented from solving serious crimes then first the system must be cleaned up and locked down so that it can only be used for those reasons you are arguing for.
Now, I don't think ANY data should be retained any longer than required for the provision of the service it was collected for, but the above is what needs to happen if the hand-wringing of the police and the others is to be taken seriously as anything more than a grab for our personal data.
While I deplore illegal dumping (keep Australia beautiful), I find it astounding that my council would be allowed to pull mobile phone location details for someone they suspect was responsible.