Friday, July 08, 2016

Databases and forensic science growing exponentially ?

The growth of different databases might have impact on forensic science, and certainly the validation. One of the issues of the data in the databases should be that they should be relied on and that the ground truth is known. Often the cleaning of data is necessary and the process should be followed according to strict rules to keep the integrity.

Nowadays we also see databases such as where the public can receive their genome data and in the Netherlands they even allow you to give you the inherited conditions, drug response, genetic risk factors and traits for informational purposes for 160 euro. In the United States this is not allowed anymore, since the FDA said the results are not validated.  However of course it is interesting the privacy aspects are more an issue as was written in the Scientific American. These databases of over one million people is interesting for research (if permitted) though, however identities are not verified.

Several students finished their thesis on forensic investigation of drones, image manipulation and searching with open source methods through big forensic face databases. This month I also have some work, as a chairman of the ENFSI Forensic IT Working group in London, which will have a meeting from 20-22 September. And as usual before August 1st, I also should submit my proposals for presentations and a workshop at the American Academy of Forensic Sciences.