Section 50: Effect of notice imposing disclosure requirement
264.This section explains the effect of serving a notice imposing a disclosure requirement in various circumstances.
265.Subsection (1) applies where a person has, at the time a notice is served, possession of the relevant protected information and a means of accessing it and of disclosing it in an intelligible form. This means that they have the password, in the case of material protected by a password; or the decryption key in the case of encrypted material; or both, in the case of material protected in both ways. In these circumstances, the effect of imposing a disclosure requirement is, first, that the recipient of a notice may use any key in their possession to access the information or to put it into intelligible form; and, second, that they must disclose it in accordance with the terms of the notice.
266.Subsection (2) allows a person who is required to disclosure information in an intelligible form to instead disclose a relevant key if they so choose to do so.
267.The effect ofSubsection (3) is that where a notice is served on a person who does not have the relevant protected information in their possession; or cannot access the information without use of a key which is not in their possession; or the notice contains a direction that a key must be disclosed (as to which, see section 51), that person must disclose any key to the information that is in their possession at a relevant time. But this duty is qualified by subsections (4) to (6).
268.The Act does not prevent the person giving a section 49 notice from giving the recipient access to the protected information, in order to allow then to produce plain text rather than disclose a key.
Relevant time is defined in section 50(10)
269.The effect of Subsections (4) and (5) is that where a person served with a notice is entitled or obliged to disclose a key, they need only provide those keys which are sufficient to access the relevant information and to put it into intelligible form. And Subsection (6) further provides that such a person may choose which keys to provide, so long as they suffice to access the information and render it intelligible.
270.Subsection (7) requires a person served with a notice to disclose every key to the relevant protected information that is in their possession, subject to the provisions in subsections (5) and (6). It means that a person need only provide those keys which suffice to access the information and render it intelligible, and that they may choose which keys to provide to achieve that end.
271.The effect of Subsection (8) is that where a person served with a notice no longer possesses a key to the relevant protected information, they are to disclose all information that is in their possession that would facilitate the discovery of the key.