Privacy concerns over the use of genealogical databases

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DNA can help you build your family tree, find out where your relatives came from, find a parent you’ve been searching for (or a sibling or distant relatives you may not have been searching for). 

DNA used to be for forensic scientists and investigators. It can exonerate someone wrongfully convicted of a crime decades ago, and it can lead to the capture of others who evaded capture for decades. 

But now DNA, in the form of 23andMe or or others, is perhaps a Christmas present or novelty among family and friends. That’s leading to a lot of discussion about how we should be handling all this unique and important information, and the ethics thereof.



  • Robert Mestman - Assistant District Attorney overseeing the Orange County District Attorney’s Office’s Science and Technology Unit
  • Vera Eidelman - DNA expert for the American Civil Liberties Union