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Old 11-01-2019, 09:15 AM
 
Location: NJ
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Wanted to post this as we were talking about LE matching at GEDmatch where you have to click the cop icon to opt into matching. With FTDNA, LE matching is on by default when you turn DNA matching on or upload a new kit. If you have not been to FTDNA since they allowed LE to upload (some time in 2018), you've been opted into LE matching even if you don't want to participate.

I suggest everyone reading to log into FTDNA to check your settings. Top right of the page it says your name and kit #, mouse over it, you'll see account settings. Go to privacy and sharing, To view your DNA relatives, you must opt in to matching. Under it, Law Enforcement Matching (LEM). If your slider is blue and to the right, you've been opted in. Make sure the slider is to the left to opt out.


I decided to make a post after reading the article below that lenora linked to in the GEDmatch thread. It pissed me off that FTDNA is boasting that less then 2% have opted out.

The Messy Consequences of the Golden State Killer Case - Tools meant to reunite families are now being “used essentially to get families to put their members in jail.” - By Sarah Zhang - Oct 1, 2019

Quote:
Meanwhile, FamilyTreeDNA was trying to retrofit a website made for connecting family members to allow for sensitive, criminal investigations. It had to create a way for users to opt out of law-enforcement searches if they wished. (Less than 2 percent have thus far.) It had to change its matching system to prevent suspects—or very close family members—from being tipped off if they matched a crime-scene sample
The number is less than 2% thus far because I'd bet 90% of FTDNA users don't know or don't realize that when they upload DNA that once they opt into matching it automatically opts in to LE matching. I'm on a mission to let everyone know; but I can only do so much though.

All of my DNA kits (8 plus one Y-DNA) at FTDNA are all opted out. I'm very upset that FTDNA gave LE access without telling us. The only reason we know is because someone spilled the news. I doubt FTDNA was planning to tell us. I don't like how sneaky FTDNA have been. I found out by accident about LE matching being on by default when you opt into matching. I'm sure at least 90% of people do not even know this. Once you turn matching on, you have to go into your settings to opt out of LE matching. If you just uploaded a kit, you've been opted in like I was with my cousins DNA. I don't recall what I was looking at in the settings but I had noticed my LE slider was to the right and blue.

At GEDmatch, some of my kits are opted in because GEDmatch opted every kit out. In order to be opted in you have to click a cop icon. I personally opted in at GEDmatch not for LE matching but to help identify John and Jane Does. I wish we could specifically just opt into matching Does. I think more people would participate to give them their identity back.

The original thread about GEDmatch and LE matching //www.city-data.com/forum/genea...nt-update.html
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Old 11-01-2019, 06:54 PM
 
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Thanks for spreading the word! I've noticed they recently redesigned their site and it took me a while to find my way around.
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Old 11-01-2019, 07:03 PM
 
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do not Give Away that which someone would pay.
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Old 11-02-2019, 12:00 PM
 
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Here's an interesting article on how LE started using FTDNA for cases before FTDNA knew about it, and then FTDNA had to respond or else be served with subpoenas:

"The FamilyTreeDNA leaders were presented with a crucial choice: whether to fight the FBI who already had access and were talking of filing a virtually endless succession of subpoena after subpoena … or to cooperate with them, and try to regulate the investigative activities."

https://www.forensicmag.com/news/201...se-cooperation
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Old 11-03-2019, 06:33 AM
 
Location: NJ
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aries63 View Post
Here's an interesting article on how LE started using FTDNA for cases before FTDNA knew about it, and then FTDNA had to respond or else be served with subpoenas:

"The FamilyTreeDNA leaders were presented with a crucial choice: whether to fight the FBI who already had access and were talking of filing a virtually endless succession of subpoena after subpoena … or to cooperate with them, and try to regulate the investigative activities."

https://www.forensicmag.com/news/201...se-cooperation
I had a feeling that the free uploads opened the door and now I wonder if they're doing the same with My Heritage.

I had asked Colleen at one time if they were going to upload there and My Heritage too because technically, like the FBI, they could. She told me that no, they would only be using public databases. Of course they do now. Colleen had been fishing in the public Y-DNA database for a few years. She gave them the Golden State killers last name back then when it was still online.

I'm really fired up about FTDNA's opt in when you say yes to family matching. From memory when I uploaded my cousins, I was not notified like GEDmatch does. According to your article people from Europe are not opted in, well that's not what I found. My cousin from Hungary was opted in. So was my Hungarian uncles Y-DNA test.

I read your article yesterday, was having issues getting here at various times yesterday so I just gave up. I ended up seeing another article Investigative Genealogy Helped Police Catch Serial Killers And Rapists. Now Cases Are Going Unsolved. I ended up sending a few FB messages out suggesting people when they speak to LE about cases that they suggest their department start DNA testing everyone and opting in to the 2 databases and instead of crying in these articles that most people opted out, to say we believe in this so much that our employees are doing it too. We'll see if it happens. I seriously doubt it.

There is a new organization listed in the article. Institute for DNA Justice, a nonprofit aiming to "educate the public about the value of investigative genetic genealogy as a revolutionary new tool to identify, arrest, and convict violent criminals.

With the type of "charity" they are, they will be allowed to pay staff as soon as they start making money. So, the people listed below will be pulling 2 salaries to "tell people to upload to these databases" and that's all they're doing because I sent them a message from their website which is really lacking, especially their "about" page. I had asked if they would buy kits for LE departments because I wasn't sure what they did. They won't be buying kits for anyone... I also asked if the founders had done their DNA and uploaded to the databases but it doesn't look like it was answered.

While LE haven't solved any cases, I wonder if Parabon has. I do know DNA Doe Project has been making ID's regularly. Pretty sure I read with FTDNA. They're running into issues with some Does but not all. Colleen is top notch and has pretty much written the book on fishing for relatives. She's been doing it as long as I've known her which is 10 years.

Quote:
The organization, which encourages users to upload DNA data to both GEDmatch and FamilyTreeDNA, is headed by Sacramento District Attorney Anne Marie Schubert, Ventura County District Attorney Gregory Totten, and Jill Spriggs, bureau chief at the California Department of Justice, according to her LinkedIn profile.
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Old 11-03-2019, 11:09 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roselvr View Post
I'm really fired up about FTDNA's opt in when you say yes to family matching. From memory when I uploaded my cousins, I was not notified like GEDmatch does. According to your article people from Europe are not opted in, well that's not what I found. My cousin from Hungary was opted in. So was my Hungarian uncles Y-DNA test.
Are you administering these kits from a US address? I think if the kits have an administrator with a European address they would be opted out. But I have since emailed a Canadian friend who said she opted in and so did her English relatives who tested. I wonder if LE agencies outside the US will try to get in on the act? Where this will all end up is anyone's guess.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Roselvr View Post
I ended up sending a few FB messages out suggesting people when they speak to LE about cases that they suggest their department start DNA testing everyone and opting in to the 2 databases and instead of crying in these articles that most people opted out, to say we believe in this so much that our employees are doing it too. We'll see if it happens. I seriously doubt it.
It won't happen. They are using emotional stories of serial killers being caught in order to motivate people to cooperate by making their kits available for DNA matching just in case it leads to solving another crime. But I worry about how it could be used for classified projects that we will never hear about in the news. Instead of issuing subpoenas to FTDNA for access, shouldn't they issue subpoenas to the individuals who uploaded there? But when we tested, we agreed that our results are the property of FTDNA. It seems like something for the ACLU to try to resolve.

I emailed a friend who administers dozens of FTDNA kits and he said LE matching was the top issue discussed at this year's FTDNA conference in Houston which he attended. He seemed to think everyone was for it. And I have no doubt that if you opt out they still have workarounds so they can find opted-out kits. Also in GEDmatch.

I wonder if this is why I have seen very few new matches at FTDNA in recent months. Definitely a slow-down over previous years.
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Old 11-03-2019, 01:49 PM
 
Location: NJ
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aries63 View Post
Are you administering these kits from a US address? I think if the kits have an administrator with a European address they would be opted out. But I have since emailed a Canadian friend who said she opted in and so did her English relatives who tested. I wonder if LE agencies outside the US will try to get in on the act? Where this will all end up is anyone's guess.
Yes I was admining the tests, I believe I had to give my uncles information in order to buy that Y-DNA test.



Quote:
Originally Posted by aries63 View Post
It won't happen. They are using emotional stories of serial killers being caught in order to motivate people to cooperate by making their kits available for DNA matching just in case it leads to solving another crime. But I worry about how it could be used for classified projects that we will never hear about in the news. Instead of issuing subpoenas to FTDNA for access, shouldn't they issue subpoenas to the individuals who uploaded there? But when we tested, we agreed that our results are the property of FTDNA. It seems like something for the ACLU to try to resolve.

I emailed a friend who administers dozens of FTDNA kits and he said LE matching was the top issue discussed at this year's FTDNA conference in Houston which he attended. He seemed to think everyone was for it. And I have no doubt that if you opt out they still have workarounds so they can find opted-out kits. Also in GEDmatch.
That's exactly what this new DNA organization is doing. Using emotional stories to get people to upload to both databases. One was my daddy was a murderer or something like that.

There are work arounds for sure at GEDmatch. All they have to do is input the matching kits ID number, then they get the not opted out matches for that kit. I guess LE's "genealogists" are not doing that since they have had zero matches since the opt out.

Quote:
Originally Posted by aries63 View Post
I wonder if this is why I have seen very few new matches at FTDNA in recent months. Definitely a slow-down over previous years.
Many people stopped matching like me or deleted all of their kits. I'm sure many people are not uploading there due to the LE matching. I doubt it's a coincidence. Most people I tell about there say no, forget it even though I tell them they have a large world wide database. They don't want to have to go in and opt out when they upload or turn matching off.
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Old 11-03-2019, 02:52 PM
 
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In any case, I think all of this is too late. Direct-to-consumer DNA testing for ancestry and genealogy will never be the same now that the FBI is involved. I'm considering deleting all my kits but I think even that will be too late. All kinds of data have likely already been harvested by all kinds of agencies in several countries and by hackers of all kinds.
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Old 11-03-2019, 05:35 PM
 
Location: NJ
15,606 posts, read 24,495,672 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aries63 View Post
In any case, I think all of this is too late. Direct-to-consumer DNA testing for ancestry and genealogy will never be the same now that the FBI is involved. I'm considering deleting all my kits but I think even that will be too late. All kinds of data have likely already been harvested by all kinds of agencies in several countries and by hackers of all kinds.
Ancestry and 23 and me are safe because they don't allow uploads.

I know DDP uses Ancestry for records and public trees. Some times they luck out with finding a tree with the Doe as a missing person where it says they don't know what happened to them or assume deceased by a certain year. I'll be shocked if FBI isn't using public trees and records from there too. I'm just glad I don't have a public tree.
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Old 11-04-2019, 10:28 AM
 
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But if the FBI was threatening FTDNA with subpoenas, wha's to stop them from doing that with the other companies?

Come to think of it, there seems to have been a slow-down in testing at Ancestry also. It will be interesting to find out whether the companies can confirm a change in sales. And it's hard to tell, but I don't think they'll get a "bump" out of people buying kits specifically to help LE, no matter how much people claim they want to help catch the bad guys.
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