Genetic database that identified Golden State Killer acquired by crime scene DNA company
Photo by Roland Weihrauch/picture alliance via Getty Images
The crime scene DNA sequencing company Verogen announced yesterday that they’ve acquired the genomics database and website GEDmatch. The acquisition makes the relationship between the company and law enforcement explicit, but raises uncomfortable questions for users and experts about data privacy and the future direction of the platform.
GEDmatch was primarily used by genealogists until 2018, when police, the FBI, and a forensic genealogist identified the suspected Golden State Killer by tying crime scene DNA to relatives who had uploaded their genetic information to the site. Since then, the platform has helped identify around 70 people accused of violent crimes.
In response to privacy concerns, the company changed its terms and…