New Zealand's spy watchdog Cheryl Gwyn is to investigate Labour MP Phil Goff's acknowledgement he disclosed findings from her report on the SIS's release of information to attack blogger Cameron Slater before its release.

Releasing the report yesterday, Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security Ms Gwyn said she was "very disappointed that details of the report were disclosed to some news media yesterday while the report was with affected parties and under embargo".

Affected parties Ms Gwyn repleased the report to early, including Mr Goff, were subject to confidentiality orders made under the Inspector General Act. Breach of confidentiality orders under the Act carries a potential penalty of a $10,000 fine or a year's imprisonment.

This afternoon Ms Gwyn said she was "examining what steps to take over the early disclosure of information from the report".

Advertisement

Ms Gwyn said she was aware of Mr Goff's subsequent statements that he had disclosed some information concerning findings in the report and would be seeking further information from Mr Goff and others.

"The broadcast or publication of that information may also have contravened the IGIS Act and, in any case, these events raise questions for the handling of future reports.

"Any issue of prosecution will, however, be for the police," she said in a statement.

Mr Goff this morning told Radio NZ that he showed the document to nobody except Labour Leader Andrew Little and Senior Whip Chris Hipkins.

Asked whether he told reporters, he said: "I gave an outline of some relevant points that I said that this cleared my integrity in the matter".

"What I did was perfectly appropriate, if the journalists decided to run information given to them in confidence then you should raise it with your colleagues," he told Morning Report's Guyon Espiner.

Ms Gwyn said early disclosure of some of the report's findings was "grossly unfair to others".

"Some of the coverage was not accurate and I'm sure the irony of that in this context is not lost on you."

Advertisement

Prime Minister John Key said Mr Goff had released details of the report early "to put his spin on it".

"I just find it deeply ironic that in a report that was based around whether information was passed, in itself is now leaked by the person who was asking for it."