Family Tree DNA & Law Enforcement

Here’s how to opt-out of law enforcement matching at Family Tree DNA.

At Family Tree DNA, most users* are automatically included in DNA matching for forensic samples submitted by law enforcement (read more about this process here). Including your DNA in forensic matching means your sample might help investigators “identify the remains of a deceased individual or a perpetrator of a homicide, abduction, or sexual assault,” if the person behind that sample is genetically related to you. Your inclusion to matching forensic samples applies to ANY test you take at FTDNA. If you want to opt out, you need to go in and change your settings.

If you do NOT wish to have your DNA included in matches viewed by law enforcement:

1. Log in to your Family Tree DNA account.

2. Go to your Account Settings > Privacy & Sharing.

3. Click and drag the “On” button by Law Enforcement Matching to “Off,” as shown below.

*EU residents who created accounts before March 12, 2019 are automatically opted-out, but they can opt-in by updating their Account Settings in a manner opposite that described above.)

Check out our free handy guide to law enforcement access on the DNA testing database, along with some comments I’ve published on law enforcement participation in DNA matching. I hope you’ll read these and make your own informed decisions!

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