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New DNA analysis revealed that Calvin Hoover killed Christine Jessop in 1984. Toronto Police Chief James Ramer sits next to a screen displaying photos of Calvin Hoover during a news conference on Oct. 15, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young

Christine Jessop’s killer identified: Solved cold case raises questions about genetic privacy

Christine Jessop was murdered in 1984 and, 36 years later, DNA evidence finally identified her killer. But the police investigation's use of genetic genealogical databases raised questions about privacy.
Individuals who upload their DNA test results to databases may not have much control over how it’s used. (Shutterstock)

DNA database sold to help law-enforcement crack cold cases

Can the new owner of GEDmatch ,a genealogy database preserve its original purpose while allowing a seamless service to law enforcement?
DNA database giant Ancestry lets members access international records including the convict and free settler lists, passenger lists, Australian and New Zealand electoral rolls and military records. Patrick Alexander/Flickr

If you’ve given your DNA to a DNA database, US police may now have access to it

A US judge has allowed police access to the major DNA database without users' consent (including Australian users). It's a timely reminder that we urgently need genetic privacy legislation.
Home DNA testing has made it easy and affordable for millions of people to learn about their ancestry. Now, police are using this genetic information to identify suspects in unsolved crimes. Shutterstock

Privacy concerns don’t stop people from putting their DNA on the internet to help solve crimes

Despite privacy concerns over police use of DNA uploaded to ancestry websites, many people are just excited that their genetic material could get a killer off the streets.
Joseph James DeAngelo, 72, who authorities suspect is the so-called Golden State Killer responsible for at least a dozen murders and 50 rapes in the 1970s and ‘80s, during his arraignment on April 27, 2018, in Sacramento, Calif. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)

How cops used a public genealogy database in the Golden State Killer case

A public genealogy data base was used to track down the so-called "Golden State Killer," raising concerns about the privacy of using public sites to fill out our family trees.

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