Digging through myths and rumors around DNA privacy

data
Image credit: Nature

Every once in a while, untruths spread through the genetic genealogy world that have the potential to do great damage: damage to adoptees seeking their biological families, to genealogists hoping to tackle brick walls, and to a thriving new tech industry that enhances an established, traditional hobby.  So, every once in a while, we need to correct the record.

The issue I’m concerned about today is the compound myth that some of the DNA companies are selling our data without our consent; that we are contractually required give them free access to our data in order to test; and that our data is being uploaded to sites like GEDmatch, MyHeritage, and Family Tree DNA to re-identify us. None of those things is happening, and these false rumors need to be squelched whenever they appear.

Related article:  Privacy perils: Impact of legislation that would strip genetic secrecy protections in US

FACT:  DNA Companies Are Not Selling Our Data Without Our Permission

ADVERTISEMENT

None of the major testing companies—AncestryDNA23andMeMyHeritageFamily Tree DNA, or Living DNA—sell our data to third parties without our permission.

FACT:  Company Research Programs Are Optional

All five of the main testing companies occasionally conduct research studies, either in-house or using outside collaborators, based on the genetic data of their customers.  They only do so with the explicit, informed consent of each individual research participant, in line with universal research protocols for studies involving human subjects.

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

Read full, original post: Correcting the Record on Privacy

Outbreak Daily Digest
Biotech Facts & Fallacies
GLP Podcasts
Infographic: Here’s where GM crops are grown around the world today

Infographic: Here’s where GM crops are grown around the world today

Do you know where biotech crops are grown in the world? This updated ISAAA infographics show where biotech crops were ...
News on human & agricultural genetics and biotechnology delivered to your inbox.
glp menu logo outlined

Newsletter Subscription

* indicates required
Email Lists
Send this to a friend