DNA Kits given to children in Texas Schools trigger data privacy fears

Schools operating in all districts of Texas are issuing DNA Kits to families that will in-turn help identify children during emergencies, such as the one witnessed in Uvalde in May this year where over 19 people including 17 children were killed by a mentally unstable person.

The process seems to be efficiently beneficial only if the digital data given to the school authorities by families remains secure and away from prying eyes.

Now, to those uninitiated, Senate Bill 2158 passed in 2021 legalizes the usage of DNA Kits retrieved information in cases such as missing children and those who were/are trafficked. Each kit includes a drop of saliva, fingerprint, and child’s physical appearance and is distributed by Texas Education Agency.

Some criminals on the dark web are ready to pay heavily if they get their hands on sensitive information, such as contact details leading to identity theft. At the same time, they also have a penchant to buy healthcare related info, as they can sell the information to research labs operating with malevolent purposes.

Good part is that the sample segregation through kits is voluntarily and so parents having second thoughts over data privacy can opt out of the program.

NOTE- During the Uvalde shooting in Texas, many children were killed in the massacre and their parents were asked to submit DNA samples just a couple of days after the massacre to prove the DNA identity with the dead pupils. Often, after such massacres, times are shattering and are hard to deal for parents. So, to avoid any such embarrassments in the future, the Texas school agency is seeking DNA samples from parents to match their children in advance.


Naveen Goud
Naveen Goud is a writer at Cybersecurity Insiders covering topics such as Mergers & Acquisitions, Startups, Cyber Attacks, Cloud Security and Mobile Security

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