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DNA security

Discussion in 'DNA Questions and Answers' started by MaggieL, Dec 4, 2018.

  1. MaggieL

    MaggieL LostCousins Star

    I have sent for a DNA kit from Ancestry but am still concerned about the security of the information. Can the information be used for health reasons? I did look back over past newsletters but didn't find much discussion about the ownership of one's DNA. Since so many have had their DNA tested, I presume that most people are satisfied about security?
  2. peter

    peter Administrator Staff Member

    If you're in the EU you're protected by GDPR, under which Ancestry could be fined up to $40 million.

    The weak link in the chain is the user - when you download your DNA results from Ancestry you can do what you like with it, and so can anyone else with access to your computer.
  3. MaggieL

    MaggieL LostCousins Star

    I am in Canada, but I believe we are also covered by GDPR.
  4. peter

    peter Administrator Staff Member

    GDPR only applies to the EU, but there may be equivalent legislation in some other countries. Most developed nations have privacy laws, but GDPR represented a considerable tightening of the regulations as they existed in the EU.
  5. canadianbeth

    canadianbeth LostCousins Member

    I just read this article today and found it very interesting, although I doubt it has any bearing on my results. It was good news for this lady, although not so much for the person further down in the story. I wonder just what ramifications it will have.
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 14, 2019
  6. peter

    peter Administrator Staff Member

    The key sentence in the article is this one:

    AncestryDNA and 23andMe actually advise customers who have had bone-marrow or cord-blood transplants against taking their tests

    I always advise people who get unexpected DNA results to keep an open mind - not all anomalies are the result of a sleazy affair.

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