Section 29 of the TICSA provides that a designated officer may grant, vary or revoke exemptions to certain interception capability obligations imposed by the Act. There are no provisions to exempt a network operator from their requirement to register.

How do I apply for an exemption regarding interception capability obligations?

Prior to applying for an exemption, network operators should contact the Registrar to discuss their specific situation. Guidelines for the exemption process will be distributed by the Registrar after this initial consultation.

What is a class exemption?

An exemption from requirements for interception capability duties under part 2 of the Act may be granted for a class of services where interception is not considered necessary. If such an exemption has been granted, then any services within that class offered by network operators will be exempt from some or all of the interception capability requirements (as determined by the surveillance agencies) in the Act, without the need for individual network operators to apply for exemptions for those services.

What class exemptions are already in force?

There is one class exemption in force (as of May 2016).

Class Exemption Co1 (PDF, 53KB) exempts Intercept Ready network operators from the administrative requirement of section 13(1)(d) to report to the Registrar every 6 months on the number of customers that the network operator has. The designated officer considers that this requirement can be effectively met through the annual registration updates in November (section 69) without the requirement for the 6-month notification.

This class exemption does not exempt a network operator from any of the other requirements of section 13. In order to continue to comply for the intercept ready threshold, a network operator must continue to make and keep a record of customers numbers each month, and continue to maintain an average of fewer than 4,000 customers per month. If an intercept ready network operator should maintain an average of 4000 or more customers over a 6 month period, this constitutes a threshold change requiring notification under section 68(3) within ten days.