Archiving Phone Calls? Why Not; It's Cheap

Archiving phone calls is becoming increasingly cheap and easy. And that could lead to some corporations doing just that.
Olga Kharif

Consultancy Ferris Research recently calculated how much it would cost to archive voice calls -- an issue all the more intriguing in light of the government's phone records controversy. Ferris estimates that storing one hour of voice calls takes up about 5 megabytes. So if a user is on the phone for an hour 200 days a year, that adds up to 1 gigabyte of storage a year. That amount of storage costs between $1.60 and $2.10.

So, in theory, recording calls -- either by the government or corporations that want to keep tabs on employee activities -- would come at a trivial cost.

As an increasing number of phone calls are being routed via the Web, through Web-calling services, they are becoming easier to record than traditional phone calls, as they are in a digital format. Considering voice archiving's low cost, I think it's a real possibility that corporations -- and, potentially, the government -- could start to record phone calls.

Before it's here, it's on the Bloomberg Terminal.