online genealogy websites just lost control

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Discussion' started by thumper, Nov 10, 2019.

  1. thumper

    thumper Picogrammar Staff Member

    I've been warning everyone in my family not to do this for many years. thankfully my family tree is small and I'm the last male with no kids. the branches are small too and I've got a paranoid family about that stuff

    Legal precedent just got set. now that doesn't mean anyone is FORCED to do this, but a judge has now ruled that the site GEDmatch not only didn't challenge the decision they made no effort to block it, so it is now established that it has been done. ALL the other Genealogy sites will be soon forced and if you, or ANYONE in your family tree has ever done these online tests, you have been exposed, as well as everyone in your family.

    Again PLEASE never do these tests. it appears nobody even challenged this and it should have been forced to the SCOTUS but it wasn't.

    also remember, any one of those sites could have been established just for this reason and to me it sure looks like GEDMatch is one.
    Orlando police granted first-ever genealogy website warrant

    ORLANDO, Fla. - History has been made in Orange County.

    The Orlando Police Department has become the first law enforcement agency to be granted a warrant for a genealogy website. Ancestry website GEDmatch helped Orlando police solve a 2001 murder case by providing access to its DNA database, but earlier this year, police say the website changed its privacy policy, blocking detectives.

    “I absolutely understood why they’re trying to do that. They’re trying to protect their consumers, but everything that we do in law enforcement starts out free or easy and always evolves to subpoena or a search warrant,” said Michael Fields, a homicide detective at the Orlando Police Department.

    Det. Fields says he felt the site could be useful in a new case. His team wrote up the first-ever search warrant for a genealogy site.

    “The judge took 24 hours to review it, and the judge eventually signed the search warrant,” Fields said.

    On July 14, 2019, Judge Patricia Strowbridge, of Florida’s Ninth Judicial Circuit, approved it. Fields would not share how the database assisted the investigation but is content with the progress in the investigation.

    “I am very pleased with where the case is going,” Fields said.

    The ruling is getting national attention because of a potential ripple effect.

    “An attorney for law enforcement or a prosecutor who is trying to seek this information could say, 'Look at the reasoning used by this judge - Judge Strowbridge in the Ninth Judicial Circuit of Florida - in Orange County and we’re asking you to apply the same reasoning in allowing us access to this information in our case,'” said Whitney Boan, attorney and legal expert.

    But, Boan says the ruling does not set a binding precedent.

    “It doesn’t really have any precedential effect on any other courts," she said. "It doesn’t require any judge anywhere to follow this judge’s order."

    Popular sites ancestry and 23andmMe are sounding off. Ancestry released a statement that reads, in part:

    “Ancestry believes that GEDmatch could have done more to protect the privacy of its users by pushing back on the warrant or even challenging it in court. Their failure to do so is highly irresponsible and deeply concerning to all of us here at ancestry.”

    23andMe released a statement that reads, in part, “It certainly troubles us here at 23andMe. Perhaps just as disturbing is GEDmatch’s apparent lack of scrutiny and challenge of the validity of the warrant issued.”

    Both sites are vowing to do as much as possible to protect their customer’s privacy. Case law on the issue is expected in the near future. Det. Fields is hoping law enforcement across the country can gain access to all databases.

    “It would open up every criminal case and make the genealogy part extremely easy,” Fields said. “So many cases would be solved overnight.”

    Boan reminds people if you’re providing your information to any company despite their privacy policy, a judge has the power to allow law enforcement access to it.

    We reached out to GEDmatch for comment but did not hear back.
    Kano and Poindexter like this.
  2. Bran

    Bran The wolf dead.

    That’s interesting. I’m not overly interested in my heritage so this has never been terribly appealing to me. But not a huge shock to see it being potentially abused so soon.

    so how would this work, exactly? A perp leaves behind DNA and the police look for a match within these databases? Maybe you’re not in there but your brother is and bang, they got you?
  3. Poindexter

    Poindexter Reputation: ∞ Staff Member Survival Pool Champion

    Isn’t it something insurance companies could abuse as well?
  4. thumper

    thumper Picogrammar Staff Member

    the problem is it would expose everyone in your whole family. to the cops but this is a slippery slope big time.

    Remember when ATMs first came out? they promised for years there would be no charges for either withdrawal or to use out of network machines. They did it just so people would be acceptable to put them in.

    Now? out of network atm transactions can be as high as 5 bucks. from BOTH. so 10.00. they got the country ok with starting to charge by making it just a cent or two. they use this kind of shit to get in the door and it never leads to anything good. when they first introduced fees they were for like a penny. then incremented their way up to what they are now.

    BUt this also means now precedent has been set, they could use this to subpoena from all of them.

    the person in the report tries to brush it over by saying there's no 'precedential effec't and says it doesn't force any judge to do anything. But that's not the point. It means now some judge took the step to SET precedent. till now nobody would touch it, but now that there is a history all judges can make the decision because it already established that its been done in the past.

    annnnnnd it doesn't have to be a 'perp' that leaves his dna. Anyone in his family or cousin, aunt, uncle etc will now open up the path to the family and start drilling down, eventually pointing out the 'perp'

    MOST people in the world have never given their dna to the cops, so as a whole were safe. but open this can of worms and you better be awfully sure nobody has grabbed your dna if youve done anything illegal.

    this is a massive 'big brother' issue.

    but worse than that, it opens a giant security hole because now all cop shops will eventually have cases, and hackers have a whole lot of entry points they never had before.

    I don't care what anyone says this is going to happen eventually. but we'd hoped it would take many years. they could have challenged the judge and fought it all the way up to the SCOTUS to decide it, but they didn't. so now it's on record
    --- Post Added -- Nov 10, 2019, ---
    anyone with the power to request a subpoena could. ALL lawyers. just like how they've started subpoenas for shit like alexa, and google voice, home, messaging etc.
  5. Poindexter

    Poindexter Reputation: ∞ Staff Member Survival Pool Champion

    Potentially they could start dividing people via genetic predispositions, lobbying for changes legislatively based on risk, etc. And/or they wouldn't even have to disclose they were doing it, if they had the information. Given the contractual language of some of the ancestry sites, people may have already tacitly allowed the companies to use/sell the information as they choose to. Things like that don't seem that far out of possibility.
  6. Noise

    Noise Ruido

    Trodden likes this.
  7. Trodden

    Trodden Aggretsuko is my power animal

    I'm guessing this is mainly a white people problem

    Mexicans dont hand over evidence
  8. Palma

    Palma I am chaos

    Shut your tamale hole!
    Trodden likes this.
  9. Trodden

    Trodden Aggretsuko is my power animal

    then where do I put my tacos?
    Palma likes this.

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