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The DNA Testing Companies Reply to Warrant Permitting Police Full Access to GEDmatch Database #DNA

Jan Meisels Allen
 

 

 

Earlier this week I posted about a Florida judge granting a warrant to law enforcement to search GEDmatch’s full database. The court basically overruled the public DNA company’s policy on privacy. Since then both Ancestry and 23andMe—both private DNA testing companies,  have issued statements.

 

Ancestry

Ancestry believes GEDmatch could have done more to protect the privacy of its users by challenging the warrant in court or at least pushing back on the warrant.  Ancestry has emphasized that their customer’s privacy and being good stewards of their data is their highest priority. They also have a transparency report that outlines law enforcement requests for member data. They say they received no valid requests for information related to genetic information. To read their statement in full including the Coalition for Genetic Data Protection’s comments, of which Ancestry is a member see:

https://blogs.ancestry.com/ancestry/2019/11/08/your-privacy-is-our-top-priority/

 

23andMe

 

23andme also issued a statement commenting on how troubling they find GEDmatch’s lack of challenging the warrant. They question as a private database whether the Florida court’s warrant impacts them. 23andMe also has a transparency report and they have received 10 requests out of their 10 million customers and successfully challenged each one. They are also a member of the Coalition for Genetic Data Protection.

Their statement may be found at: https://blog.23andme.com/news/our-stance-on-protecting-customers-data/

 

I have no affiliation with either Ancestry or 23andMe ad am reporting on this solely for the information of the reader.

 

Jan Meisels Allen

Chairperson, IAJGS Public Records Access Monitoring Committee