The Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI) released a report on June 17, titled “Genomic Surveillance: Inside China’s DNA Dragnet.” The report claimed that China’s Ministry of Public Security (Chinese police) conducted a compulsory DNA data collection on a mass scale in late 2017. Observers believe that this action not only violates human rights and personal privacy but also exacerbates political persecution.
The report indicated that DNA samples were collected from people residing in 22 of China’s 31 administrative regions (excluding Hong Kong and Macau) and across more than a hundred municipalities between late 2017 and April 2020.
According to the report, the authorities have collected DNA samples from 5 to 10 percent of China’s male population, or roughly 35 to 70 million people since late 2017. Furthermore, “those individuals have no control over how their samples are collected, stored and used; nor do they have a clear understanding of the potential implications of DNA collection for themselves and their extended families,” the report said.