Feeds

DNA database includes nipper and nonagenarian

The seven ages of man according to Smith

High performance access to file storage

Jacqui Smith yesterday showed how the DNA database presents a truly wideview snapshot of Britain when she revealed the youngest subject on the database is under one year while the oldest is over 90.

Smith revealed the data in an answer to a question from Lib Dem MP Chris Huhne.

She said, “As at 26 November 2008, the youngest person with a profile on the National DNA Database was aged under one year and the oldest was over 90 years old.” Just for absolute clarity, she added that “the youngest person to have had a profile added to the NDNAD was under one year old, and the oldest was over 90 years old, at the time the profile was added.”

Smith was at pains to ensure that her answer did not breach anyone's human rights, pointing out that she couldn't disclose the precise age of the nongenarian subject, “as it would constitute personal data as defined by Article 2 of the European Data Protection Directive: information relating to an identified or identifiable individual.”

She also reassured Huhne that she had declared back in December that the government would take immediate steps to remove the DNA profiles of children aged under ten from the DNA repository.

Smith gave no indication as to whether the baby and the oldie were actual criminals or suspects. It is of course unlikely, though not impossible, that the nation's youth are getting up to naughties before they can walk.

And age does not exclude you from criminality. It is entirely possible that the subjects were caught up in police investigations which required the taking of DNA samples, and their retention on the database – for a while at least.

Still, the information was enough to prompt righteous indignation from Huhne, who said “It is illegal, immoral and ineffective to keep the DNA of a baby on a national police database as if they had committed some felony. The sooner the Home Secretary implements the European Court’s ruling that our DNA database contravenes the right to privacy, the better."

“Since the DNA database began, nearly 1.1 million children have had their DNA stored without their permission. Children have become the soft target of a random DNA policy,” he fumed.

Or they have become the target of a DNA policy which believes in predestination, and reasons that any children it encounters will probably grow up to become criminal, so surely it makes sense to swab 'em now and get it over and done with. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Android engineer: We DIDN'T copy Apple OR follow Samsung's orders
Veep testifies for Samsung during Apple patent trial
MtGox chief Karpelès refuses to come to US for g-men's grilling
Bitcoin baron says he needs another lawyer for FinCEN chat
Did a date calculation bug just cost hard-up Co-op Bank £110m?
And just when Brit banking org needs £400m to stay afloat
One year on: diplomatic fail as Chinese APT gangs get back to work
Mandiant says past 12 months shows Beijing won't call off its hackers
German space centre endures cyber attack
Chinese code retrieved but NSA hack not ruled out
EFF: Feds plan to put 52 MILLION FACES into recognition database
System would identify faces as part of biometrics collection
Big Content goes after Kim Dotcom
Six studios sling sueballs at dead download destination
Ex-Tony Blair adviser is new top boss at UK spy-hive GCHQ
Robert Hannigan to replace Sir Iain Lobban in the autumn
Alphadex fires back at British Gas with overcharging allegation
Brit colo outfit says it paid for 347KVA, has been charged for 1940KVA
Jack the RIPA: Blighty cops ignore law, retain innocents' comms data
Prime minister: Nothing to see here, go about your business
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
HP ArcSight ESM solution helps Finansbank
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.