UK and Canada launch investigation into DNA database 23andMe after data breach last year

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The privacy authorities of the United Kingdom and Canada have launched a joint investigation into the commercial DNA database 23andMe. In October 2023, hackers managed to gain access to sensitive customer data, such as genetic information.

The authorities of the United Kingdom and Canada say they are investigating how the data breach at 23andMe could have occurred. In addition, the extent of the data breach and the information exposed are evaluated. It also examines which security measures 23andMe used. It will also be examined whether the company acted appropriately after it became aware of the data breach and whether it reported the breach as required by privacy legislation.

In October last year, 23andMe announced that there was a data breach. The commercial database also reset users' passwords at that time. A few months later it became clear that hackers gained access to the data of around 14,000 customers. In early 2024, 23andMe released even more information about the data breach. The hackers are said to have started the attacks in May 2023, which would last until September.