Daily DashboardEuropean Data Protection Digest

Minister: De-identified DNA Profiles Kept, Re-Identifiable

BIOMETRICS—UK

July 28, 2011

Months after a bill was introduced to remove the DNA profiles of innocent people from police databases, Home Office Minister James Brokenshire says the profiles will be retained in an anonymized form, at which point they would be considered deleted. However, he added, the original barcode will remain, "theoretically" making the data re-identifiable. Brokenshire also said that the Information Commissioner's Office gave its approval to the plan to allow forensic labs to keep the anonymized profiles. However, a Home Office spokesman told The Guardian that its policy is unchanged, meaning "DNA records of the innocent will come off the database and physical samples will be deleted."
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