Copyright Act

The Copyright Act establishes a process to deal with unauthorised sharing of copyright material via the internet.

The law is designed to discourage the illegal download, and upload of content, such as music, film or books, via online file sharing. Copyright owners will do this by recording alleged infringements based on an IP address, which is a unique identifier for any broadband connection.

With this law, IPAPs (Internet Protocol Address Providers) like Spark are required to pass on copyright infringement notices from rights owners to our customers.

As the account holder of an internet account you are liable for what happens on your internet connection. In the case of a recorded infringement, account holders will receive up to two warning notices. At the third notice an Enforcement Notice, the rights owner may take action against the account holder at the Copyright Tribunal.

Please read the Q&A for more detailed information or visit The Q&As are intended to provide general information, not legal advice and you cannot rely on this information as a substitute for legal advice.

What does this mean for you?

Ordinarily, this law should make no changes to how you use your broadband. However, if you upload or download files (e.g. music or video) to and from the internet using a filesharing application you need to make sure that you, or anybody else using your internet service, are not infringing on the copyright of others. Should this happen, you may receive infringement notices. On the third notification (an enforcement notice) the Copyright owner can bring its case with you to the Copyright Tribunal.

How does this work?

Copyright owners monitor alleged infringements of their works online based on IP addresses. When they wish to pursue an alleged infringement they notify us, your ISP. We then match the IP address to the relevant account holder and pass the notice on to you.

Challenge a notice

If you don't agree with the alleged infringement you have 14 days to challenge a notification by downloading this form or using the paper copy you received with your notice (notices will be sent to you in the same way you receive your bill). We will then pass this on to the Copyright owner. We will also inform you of their response when they accept or reject your challenge. Download form

More information for Rights Holders

In accordance with Regulation 5 of the Copyright (Infringing File Sharing) Regulations IPAPs can specify a process by which rights owners can provide rights owner notices to the IPAP. Please contact Spark for information on Spark's process at:

More information

You can find more information about this Act on the Ministry of Business, Innovation & Employment website at

Annual compliance report in accordance with section 122T(4) of the Copyright Act.

In accordance with section 122T(4) of the Copyright Act ("the Act") Spark confirms that it has complied with section 122T of the Act for the previous year.

  1. In accordance with section 122T(1) has retained, for a minimum of 40 days, information on the allocation of IP addresses to each account holder;
  2. In accordance with section 122T(2) has retained for a minimum of 12 months the following information:
    1. All information about infringements that was sent by rights owners to Spark for the purpose of matching infringements to account holders; and
    2. All infringement notices issues to account holders; and
    3. All challenges to infringement notices and all responds to them and
    4. Information on cancelled and expired infringement notices.
  3. In accordance with section 122T(3) Spark confirms that it has not released the name or contact details of an account holder unless authorised to do so by the account holder and/or Tribunal.