24Genetics and data privacy

Genetic analyses provide sensitive information about aspects related to our health, such as the propensity to contract certain types of diseases. For this reason, few subjects are as confidential about privacy as the data that is extracted from the genotyping of our DNA. At 24Genetics, aware of this reality, we take respect for confidentiality very seriously, which has led us to design policies and processes to ensure that information that our clients do not want to share is not available to third parties or 24Genetics’ professionals.

Data anonymisation

To this end, one of the measures we adopt is the conversion of our customers’ identity into a code; so that information related to the customer’s name, ID number or gender is hidden even from our team. We thus comply with the provisions of the biomedical law of July 2007, which defines anonymized data. It stands as “those data that cannot be associated with an identified or identifiable person because the link with all information identifying the subject has been destroyed, or because such association requires an unreasonable effort, understanding as such the use of a disproportionate amount of time, expense and work”.

As an additional measure of protection, we have decided that our customers’ data will not be available online.

Use of data for research purposes

On the other hand, in recent years, we have become aware of the controversy aroused throughout the world by the sale and monetization of genetic data. At 24Genetics, we include, among our principles, the non-marketing of our customers’ data. When the client completes the informed consent, we give him/her a choice between not sharing his/her genetic data or authorizing 24Genetics to use it anonymized for internal research purposes. Likewise, if at any time we decide to collaborate with any institution or platform, our clients will be asked for their express consent. We have recently done in the agreement reached with IdiPAZ, Instituto de Investigación Universitario La Paz, to study whether there is a genetic propensity for Covid-19 coronavirus infection to be more or less severe.

Raw data

Last but not least, if the client wishes to receive his RawData file with its genetic sequencing, we provide it in its entirety for free. Similarly, the client can always demand that we delete his genetic data from our records.

24Genetics and your peace of mind

At 24Genetics, we believe that only through trust can a long-term relationship be created with our clients and for this reason, we invest in those values, such as privacy, that are most relevant to them. That is our primary commitment to the future.

Written by Dr. André Flores Bello

Geneticist

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