Resources: Universal DNA databases

Risks of compulsory genetic databases Science (2019)

This short insight piece summarises some of the major risks associated with any proposals for compulsory universal databases, including increasing the problems already associated with current forensics and consumer databases including potential misuse of personal genetic information, discrimination, and the increasing risk of errors and mismanagement as the sizes of databases expand.

The piece concludes that “Crime deterrence and administrative efficiency are important objectives. However, free and democratic societies must balance these goals against privacy, autonomy, and presumption of innocence. The willingness to trade universally recognised rights for the hypothetical benefits of administrative efficiency is a common denominator of surveillance states.