“It all happened so slowly”: on controlling function creep in forensic DNA databases
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionDahl, Johanne Yttri & Sætnan, Ann Rudinow(2009). "It all happened so slowly": on controlling function creep in forensic DNA databases. International journal of law, crime and justice. 37(3), 83-103.
Forensic DNA databases are implemented worldwide and used increasingly. Part of this increasing usage is arguably a matter of function creep. Function creep refers to changes in, and especially additions to, the use of a technology. In this article we explore the notion of function creep as we discuss why and how it has taken place on forensic DNA databases. We also consider what future function creep it is possible to envisage. As even security enhancing technologies may contribute to insecurities, what safeguards should be in place to render function creep governable? We use the Norwegian DNA database, expanded considerably as recently as September 2008, as our primary case for discussion. Additionally we use examples from the English and Welsh DNA database which, considered world leading, may be an indication of where other DNA databases are heading. The article isn‘t data-driven but draws on a wide spectrum of data: governmental documents, public and Parliamentary debates, and interviews.
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