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Re: [Cryptography] Crypto basic income

On Mon, Sep 25, 2017 at 07:53:51PM +0000, Roland Alden wrote:
> Can a (competently collected and analyzed) sample of DNA be viewed
> as a "really high quality" biometric?
> One can imagine certain medical applications driving the cost
> of quick DNA sampling down to the point where this prediction is
> laughable...

This would imply that users might well be effectively forced to provide
DNA samples in various places.  (E.g., if a government were to require
a DNA sample before issuing a driver's license or passport.)  This in
itself might be ok *if* one were to trust an elected government -- and
all future governments -- not to misuse or mission-creep-use the sample
for unrelated things.

But once that database exists, history shows that mission creep is very
likely, including nonconsentual or forced-"consentual" commercial uses.
The classic example is an insurance company buying (enough of a government
to allow) access to the database and then using it to deny life insurance
coverage to anyone with a high-risk-of-disease DNA profile.  (This is
already an issue with medical records, where it's essentially impossible
to buy individual life insurance in the US or Canada without "consenting"
to the Medical Information Bureau
searching one's medical records.)

The underlying problem is that knowing someone's DNA sequence reveals
a lot of other information about a person apart from their identity,
This isn't the case for most other good biometrics (e.g., fingerprints
or iris patterns).

-- Jonathan Thornburg <jthorn4242 AT gmail.com>
   "There was of course no way of knowing whether you were being watched
    at any given moment.  How often, or on what system, the Thought Police
    plugged in on any individual wire was guesswork.  It was even conceivable
    that they watched everybody all the time."  -- George Orwell, "1984"
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