This Can’t Be Good: Genealogy Companies Say They’re Willing to Give Law Enforcement Your DNA

Christopher Furlong/Getty Images
Christopher Furlong/Getty Images

We all have those people in our family or close circle who are just like Martin Lawrence’s character in Boomerang: They “here” on all the conspiracies—from being certain that microwaves cause sterility in black men (or is it White Owls?) to obsessively covering up the cameras on their laptops. These are the folks who would never, ever, ever, ever give up their genetic material to one of those popular genealogy testing companies because “the man might get my God gene.”

But as crazy as they sometimes may sound, a new report reveals that police can acquire your DNA from said companies—who actually say they would be willing to provide it!

This can’t be good for black folks.

WJAX-TV reports that companies such as 23andMe and would be willing to give police access to your DNA if they have a warrant. Further, police would also be able to obtain DNA from a family member to make a “familial match.”


23andMe says it has yet to turn over any genetic information but would do so if provided a warrant; reportedly complied with a 2014 search warrant to obtain a DNA sample from a site customer.

Wayminnut—Apple wouldn’t let the FBI crack its phones after a terror attack, but your God genes genetic material can go to po-9?

This can’t be good for black people—who may over-index on such testing sites because we’re so thirsty to find out our ancestry as a result of the trans-Atlantic slave trade.

The good news: You can delete your results if you so please:

Click here for 23andMe and click here for

Read more at WJAX-TV.

Ms. Bronner Helm is the Senior Editorial Director at Colorlines. Mouthy Black Girl. Rosalynn Carter Mental Health Fellow. Shea Butter Feminist. Virgo Sun, Aries Moon.

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“Why don’t you just go down to the police and turn yourself in, now?”—My Mom when I told her I gave my spit to Ancestry dot com.

“You ain’t gotta give me a dime to tell you what you are. You all Negro and all dumb for giving them white folks your DNA!”—my grandfather

Please don’t tell them about this. I will be hearing “I Told You So” forever