Police DNA Database Cut Down to Size

The Home Secretary, Jacqui Smith, will this week unveil plans to remove from the police national database DNA information relating to up to one million innocent people. The proposals come in the wake of the ECtHR’s judgment in Marper in December 2008 that the practice of retaining the DNA profiles of innocent people on the database constituted an unjustified interference with the Article 8 right to privacy. Privacy campaigners have welcomed this development but continue to lobby for further limitations on the database, including removing the DNA profiles for minor offenders. See further Tim Pitt-Payne’s article on the Marper judgment in the New Law Journal.