Some DNA-testing firms are in cahoots with the feds

Friday, March 15, 2019
 | 
Chris Woodward (OneNewsNow.com)

DNA strandIt's a growing industry, with radio, television, and print ads to boot – but do you know where your DNA might be going after signing on with one of those genealogy companies?

"Family Tree in particular has come under fire for not disclosing to the people who gave them their data that they share this data with the FBI without even getting warrants first," says Dan King, a senior contributor at Young Voices. "They have issued a statement and sent an email to customers apologizing for it and explaining that they do have a setting within the app where you can turn off this data matching." (See related article)

He continues: "However, that then defeats the purpose of giving your DNA up in the first place, because then you can no longer find those ancestral ties, you can no longer find long-lost family members – so it defeats the whole purpose of why you originally gave up your data if you want to protect your privacy."

petri dish stem cell researchThe spokesman for Young Voices says he wouldn't be surprised if other companies are sharing data or DNA.

"23andMe and Ancestry.com both say that they won't share anything with any law enforcement agency unless that agency comes to them with a warrant; and so far, 23andMe has held true to that," he continues. "They've received five requests without a warrant and they've turned down all five, but there's nothing legally binding about that. So they could immediately do a turn-face and hand over everything willy-nilly."

King shares these concerns in an article for The American Conservative. He doubts whether customers read the terms of agreement from these companies.

"It's probably just like the terms of service you get from Apple before you buy an iPhone or any other company that takes your data," he explains. "Most people are not reading through thousands or hundreds of pages to find out what's going on with their data …

"Sure, some of that falls upon us," he acknowledges, "but when it gets to the point where companies are sharing things with law enforcement [or] with the feds without a warrant, that's when it really starts to become a problem."

Comments

We moderate all reader comments, usually within 24 hours of posting (longer on weekends). Please limit your comment to 300 words or less and ensure it addresses the article - NOT another reader's comments. Comments that contain a link (URL), an inordinate number of words in ALL CAPS, rude remarks directed at other readers, or profanity/vulgarity will not be approved. More details

FEATURED PODCAST

SIGN UP FOR OUR DAILY NEWSBRIEF

SUBSCRIBE

VOTE IN OUR POLL

How likely is it Texas will go 'blue' in November 2020 presidential election?

CAST YOUR VOTE

GET PUSH NOTIFICATIONS

SUBSCRIBE

LATEST AP HEADLINES

  Democrats revive 'Medicare for All' fight at Atlanta debate
Buttigieg's rise positions him as top target at 5th debate
Arizona border activist acquitted of harboring immigrants
Browns' Garrett awaits ruling after hearing for suspension
Police: Mother took daughter from care facility, killed her
Blackouts hit Northern California again during fire danger
Key witness perceived – wasn't told – it was 'quid pro quo'
Royal scandal: Prince Andrew to step back from public duties

LATEST FROM THE WEB

Shut the circus down: Is this the 'game over' moment for these Trump-Ukraine impeachment hearings?
HS girl swimmer near tears after transgenders get 'unrestricted' access to locker room where she changes 'multiple times, naked' in front of others
Mark Meadows: Impeachment hearing produced this 'real bombshell'
Huh? World’s largest higher education union says anyone should be able to ‘identify as black’
Defending illegal aliens that commit crimes

CARTOON OF THE DAY

Cartoon of the Day
NEXT STORY
Technology can't replace doc at bedside

elderly patientTechnology has a rightful place in medicine but it cannot and should not replace the heart of a caring doctor, says a longtime physician.