DNA privacy is not in everyone’s minds. All too many people are eager to learn of their genealogy to razzle dazzle their peers with some form of importance about their heritage. But what is at stake with millions of records being created by the processing of direct to consumer tests (DTC) requests is reliability, security, privacy, and accuracy or veracity of the claimed results. Does anyone fathom where that DNA record goes to? Does anyone even think how that DNA record can be used after one receives the results, that they are 2.5% Eskimo. Some would be shocked that their ancestry, maybe 5% came form Madagascar of all places.
DNA is critical information. The faithful believe that it was created by God and it identifies “you”. DNA information about someone is so critical that it becomes the central component of clinical trials for diseases. DNA is being used for solving crimes. Data matches are generated to locate the origin of someone’s activity that can be related to an event, such as a crime scene. The process used for identifying a person through their DNA can have converse uses or consequences.
The provision of their DNA is in the hands of the unknown. No one knows where it is, how it is stored, chronicled, or used after the saliva or blood sample that is used to arrive at what makes “you” so specifically identifiable, i.e., the resulting nucleotide polymorphism. The DNA information can be used to impinge on your freedoms, and it can be used to prevent you from receiving certain services or products. Thanks to the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA), health insurance, life, or medical insurance cannot be denied. Only the gullible will feel comfort from this. The gullible will still have to prove that the denial was due to DNA results. That is a heavy burden to prove in court. So, the gullible is left open to be discriminated due to DNA results.
Of course, there are positives to DNA testing. DNA testing can be the source of arriving at a cure for disease. Also, DNA tests done by your personal doctor can be protected by medical records privacy regime under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). However, there are limits to the expected privacy protection of your DNA. But by it being covered by the HIPAA guidelines, it does not mean that the DNA results are not provided to the MIB (Medical Information Bureau). Most people do not know that MIB exists. MIB is resorted to by hundreds of insurance entities who then seek the DNA data to determine whether to grant you insurance coverage.