Unexplained Skyrocket of 5G Home Internet Usage

  • 21 May 2023
  • 5 replies
  • 410 views

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I called T-Mobile support about this, but they really didn’t have any answers for me, so wanted to see if anyone else had experienced anything like this.

 

My TM 5G Home Internet usage skyrocketed without any change in our household’s usage behavior during this current billing cycle (May 2023). We have the Nokia 5G21 Gateway. In March we used 66.55 GB, April was 9.23 GB and May is 417.31 GB.

 

I’ve checked all the devices connected to our home network and have been able to identify them all, so I don’t think anyone is tapping into our network. We aren’t experiencing any decrease in speeds or dropping of the network, so maybe I don’t have any reason to be concern, the jump in data usage was just alarming, since we only really web browse, stream video and connect smart home devices. We don’t do anything that would send massive data outwards, either.

 

A few things I noticed in my usage reports over the last few months was the number of reports jumping from 8 in March and 1 in April to over 3,000 in May. Also, the previous reports showed as “Mobile Internet,” whereas May’s report shows all as “Internet Access.” So those were both odd.

 


5 replies

Userlevel 7
Badge +11

Try changing the password on your device (hacked + freeloaders?)

Also check your devices - does someone have something running all the time ?  I have 5 lines + home internet, and can’t hit that number with all combined without trying (i.e. running lots of Ookla speed tests).  Ironically, my usage dropped from ~+500GB (all lines + TMHI) (March/April) to < 200 May 

Userlevel 6
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My TM 5G Home Internet usage skyrocketed without any change in our household’s usage behavior during this current billing cycle (May 2023). We have the Nokia 5G21 Gateway. In March we used 66.55 GB, April was 9.23 GB and May is 417.31 GB.

 

One of your devices could have malware.

 

https://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2023/05/potentially-millions-of-android-tvs-and-phones-come-with-malware-preinstalled

 

Userlevel 7
Badge +11

Yup.  Get your latest security patch.  Sadly, its one of the reasons that I don’t go far from either Samsung or Apple.    I would agree (with ease) that most tablets/appliances/TV’s are unpatched and probably a big security risk on your network.  Need to have a separate DMZ for many devices with some ingress/egress rules.

Userlevel 4
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The thing that jumps out at me is March and April usage are incredibly small.  Your May looks more typical of “moderate” usage for a month.  Less than 100 gig in a month is *very light* usage for a household that is streaming any kind of video.  Plenty of households can burn thru a terabyte or more per mouth. I personally suspect that the issue is that the TM was under-counting your usage totals for March and April.  It is well known that TM data-counting service was regularly going off-line and not accumulating correct totals.  I believe that has been largely resolved now, but I myself have observed weeks-at-a-time in the past where data usage was not being accumulated at all.

I agree that the 500GB for a month if you stream TV at all is not exceptionally high. The prior months are freakishly low. People who review TMobile internet on YouTube often say they are way over 1TB a month (to show no cap or throttling due to usage). Do you connect through a router? Does it have application usage in the router admin pages? My old Asus did. 

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