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Biometrics

UK DNA database errors raise concerns

5 December, 2007
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(Dieser Artikel ist auch in deutscher Sprache verfügbar)

The largest DNA database in the world covering details on about 4.5 million people including information on every person arrested, convicted or not, and on 900 000 children raises questions as inaccuracies and administrative errors have been found in its records.

Incorrect dates, spelling mistakes and duplications have been found by Data Quality and Integrity Team of the DNA database unit. These mistakes can lead to innocent people being accused of crimes and wrongly arrested. Information added to incorrect profiles has also obliged the police to erase affected records.

The DNA Database Unit had also admitted in a report in May 2007 that between 1995 and 2005 it failed to load 26 200 records to the DNA database because

DNA tests approved by French Constitutional council

21 November, 2007
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(Dieser Artikel ist auch in deutscher Sprache verfügbar)

In a decision published on 15 November 2007, the French Constitutional council approved the introduction of DNA testing in the new immigration law to prove family links for foreign candidates applying for a more than 3 months visa on family regrouping grounds. However, it has further restricted their use, making two explicit reservations.

The first reservation makes this provision irrelevant when family links with the mother can be proven by any other legal mean under the law of the mother's country. The second reservation forbids any systematic application of DNA testing, since the Council reminds that all other means to prove family links should be used first by French consulates.

Update on DNA and biometrics in French immigration law

24 October, 2007
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(Dieser Artikel ist auch in deutscher Sprache verfügbar)

With its final vote on 23 October 2007, the French Parliament confirmed the introduction of DNA testing in the new immigration law to prove family links for foreign candidates applying for a more than 3 months visa on family regrouping grounds. The only recourse could now be a decision from the French Constitutional Council to remove this provision from the law, since the Parliamentary opposition (Socialists, Communists and Greens), together with some centrist members of Parliament, announced that it would challenge the adopted law before the Constitutional judge.

The final vote occurred after a Parliamentary Commission agreed on the harmonisation of the draft texts resulting from both the National

Recommanded Reading

26 September, 2007
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Data Protection Framework Decision: EDPS concerned about dilution of Data Protection standards
http://edps.europa.eu/EDPSWEB/webdav/site/mySite/shared/Documents/EDPS...

Nuffield Council on Bioethics : The forensic use of bioinformation: ethical issues. This Report considers whether current police powers in the UK to take and retain bioinformation are justified by the need to fight crime. Executive Summary
http://www.nuffieldbioethics.org/fileLibrary/pdf/The_forensic_use_of_b...

Full Report
http://www.nuffieldbioethics.org/fileLibrary/pdf/The_forensic_use_of_b...

DNA tests proposed in France for family visa applicants

26 September, 2007
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On 19 September 2007, the French National Assembly adopted a draft law on immigration that allows DNA tests on candidates applying for a more than 3 month visa on family regrouping grounds. The draft law was sent to be examined by the Senate starting with 2 October.

The draft law was passed with a new amendment proposed by its rapporteur, deputy Thierry Mariani that is meant to: "allow a long-term visa applicant to request the comparison, at his (her) expense, of his (her) genetic prints or those of his (her) spouse with those of his (her) minor children for a family regrouping request, in case diplomatic or consular agents have expressed a serious doubt regarding the authenticity of the legal status document presented".

The text adopted by the French National Assembly authorised this procedure

The European Court of Human Rights could influence the UK DNA database

12 September, 2007
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Sir Stephen Sedley has recently proposed the enlargement of the DNA database in UK to cover the entire population and visitors that stay in UK even for a week, under the argument of creating a fairer system and eliminating the ethnical unbalance in the present database. But a case brought by 2 English people to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) could change a lot in how the database will operate.

The UK DNA database is one of the largest in the world covering data from everybody having had anything to do with any crime, minor or major, guilty or not. According to Sadley, the database is biased against ethnic minorities. "It means where there is ethnic profiling going on disproportionate numbers of ethnic minorities get onto the database. It also means that a great many people who are walking the streets and whose DNA

Italian officials prepare the law for a DNA database

4 July, 2007
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(Dieser Artikel ist auch in deutscher Sprache verfügbar)

Italy is preparing its DNA database law, claiming that it needs harmonization with the other European states situation, but forgetting about the privacy concerns. According to col. Luciano Garofano from RIS (Reparti Investigazioni Scientifiche), it is not very long until the law allowing archiving DNA data will be in place.

In Garofano's opinion, Italy is actually one of the last to have a legislation in the domain and the problem is that although Italy has signed the Prüm treaty to exchange data, it has no data to exchange.

The colonel believes that Italy needs this database that would be efficient in identifying criminals as well as innocent people. Experts however fear

Recommended Reading

20 June, 2007
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Belgian Biometric Passport does not get a pass... Your personal data are in danger!
http://www.dice.ucl.ac.be/crypto/passport/index.html

Centre for Educational Research and Innovation - Giving Knowledge for Free The Emergence of Open Educational Resources
http://www.oecdbookshop.org/oecd/display.asp?CID=&LANG=EN&SF1=...

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