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Spam to be finally outlawed in New Zealand

With less than a month before The Unsolicited Electronic Messages Act comes into force; are you ready for it?

The Unsolicited Electronic Messages Act 2007 comes into force on September 5 2007 and aims to prevent New Zealand becoming a haven for spammers by prohibiting unsolicited commercial electronic messages. 

The Act requires anyone who sends commercial electronic messages to include accurate sender information and a functional unsubscribe facility.  It applies to all emails, texts and instant messages that market or promotes goods, services, and other schemes of a commercial or dishonest nature.

The Act will initially pose challenges for many small businesses who have been accustomed to sending out SPAM via bulk emailing to solicit new business.  Businesses will have less than six months to get their house (particularly their electronic marketing lists) in order to comply with the Act.

2 practical steps you can take in the lead up to 5 September include the following:

  • Ensure that your marketing database lists are “clean” and all recipients on it have provided their “consent” to receiving commercial electronic messages in terms of the Act;
  •  Have a process for maintaining and updating electronic marketing lists to comply with the Act (including a process for keeping accurate records of all consents, as well as persons who have used the unsubscribe facility).

A positive consent (or an “opt-in”) to receive future emails is required. Including an unsubscribe message.  The consent requirement applies to anyone sending one-off emails as well as bulk mail-outs. 

Parts of this article have been taken from the Beehive government website.  More details on this subject can be found here:

This is a very topical, and long overdue Act, subject and I encourage you to share your comments as tough penalties will be imposed on future spammers.


  • Phil said on August 20th, 2007 at 9:24 am :


    I had no idea that such an Act was in place. I hate spam just as much as most people and I look forward to seeing how successfully it is enforced.

    Phil Goad, Owner, http://www.earth-garden.co.nz

  • Geoff said on August 22nd, 2007 at 7:31 am :

    Like the previous reader, I had no idea that this was coming in. A good read.

  • Karl hindle said on August 26th, 2007 at 11:50 pm :

    It’s about time that lawmakers and regulators started stamping down on Spam – it accounts for 80% of emails sent around the system and my own inbox ritual each morning is to clear out the rubbish I get sent.


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