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National DNA database

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meglet | 11:12 Sun 24th Feb 2008 | News
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This is in the news again after the convictions of Mark Dixie and Steve Wright. The government has so far ruled it out.

What do you think? Is a reduction of civil liberty worth it for the potential to save lives or is this a further erosion of our rights?


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I don't have any problems with having a DNA Database for the purpose of crime detection.

What concerns me is the way that the data is stored and shared. We have seen, in recent weeks, just how careless the government is on the security of data.

There is also the aspect that the database will be used for other purposes.
I dont have a problem with a national DNA database after all the only cival right it infringes is your right to commit a crime it is no diferent from having your fingerprints or dental records kept on file
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Why do you think its deemed that a National DNA database would be more intrusive of civil liberties than a fingerprint database? What are the potential risks of any details from the database being released?
personally I have nothing to hide but I do not think that any database is foolproof.

but how do we know that we are not already on one...many of us have had blood tests or similar!
The government has shown itself incapable of keeping our bank details secure. MI5 have left laptops in tapas bars.
Someone on this site got information from the sex offenders register from a relative

It's pretty clear that if this happened your DNA would become available.

Firstly there's the issue of reliability of DNA evidence. We hear loads of stuff about million to one odds and nobody ever seems to mention that it depends on how reliably the sample has been handled, the possibility of it being transferred from one place to another.

With a national DNA database you could be the suspect of a murder investigation because you were one of 20 people who happened to travel in a cab.

Then there's the issue of your DNA in the wrong hands. Maybe you have a nasty disease in your familly that doesn't affect you but do you want your employer to know, your insurer, your new girlfriend?

DNA blackmail could be with us very shortly.

Remember - you can change your bank account, you can't change your DNA

This is one of the issues that I'm happy to agree with Jake on. There seems to be this false belief that DNA is some sort of holy grail of guilt/innocence. The presence of DNA just proves the DNA was there, that's all. It is no proof of guilt, it is just a useful tool for investigative purposes. We should not get it into our heads that the presence of DNA = Guilty. I also have concerns about the misuse of the database which is frankly innevitable. What happens when insurance companies get hold of it and start excluding certain people for life cover etc? It's a huge can of worms.

What we have now is fine, let the Police build up their DB as they are doing
I can't see why people create a fuss about having their DNA stored. For one thing they only store the markers not the whole of the individual letters. Also why don't they get volunteers to give their DNA, in that way no one would be stigmatised. I believe they should also collect it from the maternity room before they are able to get on their soap boxes.
I take it you've not yet had anybody attempt to steal your identity then SP?

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