Commercial researchers gain FTDNA access — The Legal Genealogist

Bode Technology using FTDNA matching system The news about police access to the DNA matching system at Family Tree DNA just keeps getting worse. First, it was that, under an agreement with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, a few crime scene samples had been run through the matching system to see who in the DNA…

via Commercial researchers gain FTDNA access — The Legal Genealogist.

It seems that courts who routinely don’t allow law enforcement to go on “fishing expeditions” will ultimately settle this. Hopefully, while adhering to the U. S. Constitution and the state constitutions instead of ignoring them.

What the courts should rule is easy: law enforcement needs a warrant, subpoena, or other court document to access any DNA database and only if they have sufficient legal grounds to realistically believe a specific match exists within the database. None of this John or Jane Doe nonsense or the continued fishing expeditions. As it is now, the various DNA companies or support companies are acting as de facto arms of law enforcement and as such, should be held to the same legal standards law enforcement is held to.

GEDmatch, FamilyTree DNA (FTDNA), Bode, Parabon, and any other company should be ashamed of themselves for allowing law enforcement to violate not only the U. S. Constitution, but also numerous state constitutions. So far, only Maryland is considering laws that prevent law enforcement from using these questionable tactics. The ends do not justify the means.

Cite/link to this post: Judy G. Russell, “Commercial researchers gain FTDNA access,” The Legal Genealogist ( : posted 17 Feb 2019).

About ICT Genealogist

Originally from Gulfport, Mississippi. Live in Wichita, Kansas now. I suffer Bipolar I, ultra-ultra rapid cycling, mixed episodes. Blog on a variety of topics - genealogy, DNA, mental health, among others. Let's
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