New Zealand Police made 72 requests for information about users of auction website Trade Me in the Bay of Plenty last year.

Trade Me's annual Transparency Report showed the main reasons police requested data about Bay of Plenty Trade Me members, in the year to June 30, was related to homicide or missing persons, drugs and non-delivery of goods.

The report showed that nationally 1795 requests were made in total by a range of different government agencies.

This was a drop of 14.5 per cent on the previous year and the lowest number of requests the company had since it began reporting the data in 2014.


Police requests made up the biggest number of data requests with 1348 but that was down from 1559 in 2017 and a peak of 1840 in 2015.

Trade Me's head of policy and compliance, James Ryan, said the report reinforced the company's commitment to transparency and gave customers an insight into how it responded to requests for their data.

"The recent global attention on data sharing has heightened public awareness around privacy, and New Zealand consumers have a right to know how their data is being shared."

He said the requests relating to homicide or missing persons were to do with trying to locate someone's whereabouts.

Not all requests by police were successful with one in four resulting in no release of data.

Ryan said Trade Me worked hard to release only relevant and necessary information.

"We only release information when it's legally requested of us, and we're satisfied it's appropriate. If we feel a request is too broad or insufficient, we push back, and we did that 22 times last year," he said.

A police media spokeswoman said the New Zealand Police conducted a wide range of investigations into criminal conduct.

"Police may request the assistance of companies who hold information that will assist in our inquiries," the spokeswoman said.

"We continue to have a strong working relationship with Trade Me, and value the continued work they are doing to prevent people in our community from becoming victims of crime."

Bay of Plenty requests

19 requests relating to homicide or missing persons
19 requests relating to drugs
11 requests relating to non-delivery of goods

The remaining were a range of requests including stolen goods and credit card fraud.