Millions of people have had their DNA tested. It sounds fun. It would make a nice gift so that aunt so and so can trace her Irish roots or cousin so and so can find the perfect diet based on her genes.
Untold millions have been spent on targeted ads to lure you. These companies hype it up and that’s exactly what it is – hype! It’s easy they say. Just send in your sample to one of the well known industry giants and you’ll learn about your heritage and/or health.
It’s a big thing in the United States and in some European countries. Did you know it’s also banned in some countries? You can even be fined for taking one of the commercial tests.
When you buy that testing kit after being lured in, guess what – YOU become the product! Your DNA is the most valuable thing you possess!
Reasons you should think twice before having your DNA tested:
• Results are not always accurate. When you can send in a dog’s sample and get test results showing it is human then that should be your first red flag!! Send in your own sample twice and get two different results!!
• You may discover things you are not emotionally prepared to find out concerning family secrets or disease risks.
• When you send in your sample, are you agreeing to allow the company to share your data with third parties?
• Can results really be anonymous? Think about that! By submitting your DNA, you will jeopardize the anonymity of family members. In the future, your children or grandchildren may not be able to get a job, go to a particular school, get health insurance, or even travel due to what their DNA says about them. Their DNA was private…until you got yours tested!!
• Do you want your employer or insurance provider (or those of your relatives) to have access to your DNA records?
• Is your data really private and protected? Testing companies can say it is but is it really? And, they can always change their policies down the road.
• How about law enforcement being able to access your records? Ok, so you’re not a criminal and don’t plan on committing a crime but how about an innocent relative? How could you or they be implicated in such?
• Data breaches are also a real thing. Do you really want your DNA to be accessed as the result of a hack? Some of these testing companies have already been afflicted by such attacks.
• Do you think that big pharma wants your DNA? They sure do! Some of these DNA testing companies already have deals with pharmaceutical giants to have access to your data!
• Did you know that a big data mining company is a research partner with one of these DNA testing companies?
There is so much more to this and I have only skimmed the surface. The bottom line is this – your DNA is the most valuable thing you possess and when you use one of those companies, you might be signing away your rights!! One way or another – you, your children, or your grandchildren will eventually wish you had thought twice before having your DNA tested!!
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I had a biology professor in college that warned of the risk when sending your DNA to these companies. By sending your DNA they can do what ever they want.
Anna, it’s scary and so many are lured into doing it.
Legit medical professionals who really care about your health will tell you the dangers and urge you to avoid testing.
Barb, thank goodness I have a very caring doctor who is all about natural healthcare when possible and did not go to medical school here in the US, which makes a big difference I think.
More reports coming out about how doing this is very dangerous. I say don’t do it.
I agree, Peggy.
No way would I be dumb enough to do this. Unbelievably crazy the way people fall for such.
I agree, Diana, so unbelievable!!
How scary and dangerous!!
Yes, Melba, isn’t it though?
Humm. Great research Dee. I had been thinking about ordering a DNA test kit. But after reading this I’m not so sure now. You’ve prompted me to rethink this sounds like the risks outweigh the benefits.
Yes, Paula, we definitely need to give this some thought.
Some people are so gullible. Makes you wonder how they ever survive.
They sure are, Laurie.
I had mine done a few years ago, but knowing what I do today, I sometimes regret having done it.
Barbara, I think there are a lot of people who feel the same.
I don’t fall for every new thing that comes along. Glad I’m smarter than that. Genealogists want to push this onto us like it’s the best thing ever.
Helen, it sure seems that way. I didn’t fall for it though.
I’ve never had any desire to have my DNA tested and I don’t know of any immediate family members that have either… but we do have a distant family member that learned of a son he never knew he had from when he was in Vietnam that he’s connected with. I also know of a friend of mine who’s mother found her long lost sister (they were twins and separated at birth with adoption). Those are really the only sort of stories I’ve ever heard and wasn’t really aware of the dangers of it. Thanks for sharing.
Joanne, I think it’s best to weigh the risks.
I completely agree with your points! I might want to get genetic testing in the future because I have complex health conditions and it was suggested by my physician. Then again, this would be by a hospital, not some commercial company. Even then, I am not sure I’m ready (and that’s what my physician thought too, which is why I only found out by chance that she was thinking of it) due to what it might reveal.
It’s definitely a risk, Astrid.
I appreciate you sharing this important information with Sweet Tea & Friends this month dear friend.
You’re welcome, Paula.
I have been saying that now you could be targeted for organs and possibly even pressured to donate or killed for your organs. $$$$$ And of course big pharma is involved.
Absolutely, Michele. It’s all about the $$$ and our DNA is the most valuable thing we own!!