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How to Delete Your Data from every DNA testing service

Updated on October 22, 2021
Written by
Joel
4 sources cited
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This guide will go through how to delete your Data from every DNA testing service. This will include deletion instructions for all major consumer testing companies, such as 23andMe, Ancestry, LivingDNA, MyHeritage, and GPS origins.

Why do this?

Testing your DNA is a convenient and fun way to learn more about yourself and your heritage. It also gives you insight into basic health concerns and can motivate you to make healthy lifestyle changes.

But DNA can also be misused. This is why it’s so important to delete your DNA test results from the testing services once you have the information you need.

Who Has Your DNA?

If you’ve submitted a sample of your DNA to a testing service, they have your raw DNA sample in their system. This includes systems such as Ancestry, 23andMe, MyHeritage, LivingDNA, and more. Unless you’ve actively deleted your information, these companies keep it on file.

This exposes your most personal information to criminals, as well as anyone else who might be able to use it against you. If law enforcement, insurance companies, or employers wanted access to your DNA, they could conceivably get it from one of these companies if you don’t delete it.

Why Should You Delete Your DNA from Every DNA Testing Service?

DNA testing services have security measures in place to protect customers. They understand how sensitive the information they hold is and they’ve taken precautions to ensure DNA is safe. However, no measure of security is full-proof.

There are several examples of security breaches that have occurred and provided third-party access to the DNA information stored by testing services. For example:

If any of these issues are of concern for you or you understand the power someone holds when they gain access to someone else’s DNA, you need to take action. If you’ve submitted a sample to any DNA testing service, the best thing you can do once you’ve downloaded your raw DNA data is to delete your data from the sites.

Conclusion

Hopefully, this guide on how to delete your data from every DNA testing company was helpful, drop a note with any questions.

Resources

SHOW
HIDE

“Norton.” Norton.Com, 2018, us.norton.com/internetsecurity-emerging-threats-myheritage-data-breach-exposes-info-of-more-than-92-million-user.html. 

“The Ingenious and ‘Dystopian’ DNA Technique Police Used to Hunt the ‘Golden State Killer’ Suspect.” The Washington Post, 28 Apr. 2018, www.washingtonpost.com/news/true-crime/wp/2018/04/27/golden-state-killer-dna-website-gedmatch-was-used-to-identify-joseph-deangelo-as-suspect-police-say/. 

“Preserving Employee Wellness Programs Act (2017 - H.R. 1313).” GovTrack.Us, www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/115/hr1313 

“FamilyTreeDNA Hands the FBI Access to Its Database.” Gizmodo, gizmodo.com/familytreedna-hands-the-fbi-access-to-its-database-1832259369

Joel
Content Contributor
Joel is a writer with a passion for the science of DNA and the power of its manipulation.
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