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back to article CPS apologises for DNA disc blunder

The Crown Prosecution Service has apologised unreservedly for misplacing a disc of DNA profiles sent by Dutch authorities in January 2007. The 2,159 DNA profiles from crime scenes were not checked against the UK database until February 2008. This resulted in 15 matches. Because of the delay in dealing with the disc, 11 of the 15 …

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Black Helicopters

"No evidence that the disk was copied or left the office...."

I pick up disk, I place disk in laptop cd/dvd drive, I image it onto hard drive as an iso file with one of 100 programs, I place disk back in case on put it back on the desk under a pile of bits of paper.

Pick up laptop, walk out of office.

Now tell me, look at your disk, the one you lost for a year, and tell me if you can tell it's been copied.

Given that it was lost, and therefore out of sight for a year, I could have taken it home and copied the ones and zeros off it by hand in that time, still without anyone knowing!

Muppets the lot of them!

Black helicopter cos these idiots would forget to mask the windows before applying the stealth black paint coat.

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Bronze badge

Encrypted?

Or do we just have a pile of DNA fingerprints who we know belong to criminals lying around.

I'll admit it's better than uk.gov could have done (they'd probably publish them in the sun as a method of data transfer) as at least they seem to have a DNA/Ref table only - not actually the entire dB.

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Boffin

Let me get this straight...

Let me get this straight... several people who were not expecting to receive a disc didn't do anything with the disc that they weren't expecting?

So, if the disc contained particularly vicious rootkits/viruses/etc, they would have been expected to load it onto the first PC they come across?

Further more, if the disc had been crafted such that it was a bomb that went off once it reached a particular angular velocity (ie spinning in a drive), they would still be expected to load it into a PC, to work out what it was.

People, if you receive a CD in the post that you're not expecting, the only safe thing to do is put it through a shredder.

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Black Helicopters

Fishing

"The disc contained DNA profiles but no identifying information - the idea was to find matches between the two databases first, then get the legal clearance to link those to actual database entries."

So this was purely a fishing expedition.

Transfer a pile of DNA samples, together with ID numbers to reference the DNA to the original records, and have a look to see if there was a match on some one else's DNA database. So do they send these samples to the French & Italians as well? Who do our plods send DNA samples to?

Surely these fscking monkeys, masquerading as members of the legal profession, need a **reason** to check DNA samples against another countries database.

Surely, when a CPS lawyer goes on extended absence someone else picks up their cases etc. WTF was his boss doing?

Head *need* to roll over this, but they won't. The plods and lawyers always look after their own, bastards!

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Thumb Up

@AC 13.39

There spaketh the voice of reason.

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Coat

30 days have September

Errr, I see the problem, there was not a 29th of Febuary 2007 so it had to wait to be delivered on the 29th of Febuary 2008.

Doh!!!

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Mine is not to wonder why, mine is just to do in vi

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Bronze badge

This is not an accident

it cant be. The laws of averages say so. Some monkey is deliberately losing these CD's. I just cant believe that this is all random incompetency. If it was the government agencies that are involved should of collapsed years ago. So who's in charge of this asylum ???

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Linux

Comedy of errors ?

Or errors in a comedy ?

Sounds all too fishy to me !

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Unhappy

Re This is not an accident

"I just cant believe that this is all random incompetency."

Ah. You've never worked in government then. Anyone who has, would. It takes a long time but eventually you accept these people are not capable of conspiracy. Incompetence really is the only answer.

BTW, I received an unmarked CD on my desk the other week. Sent via internal mail, not even a Post-It to say who from or why me. It was the source code & design documents for a software product to be launched next year. Our internal Technical Design Authority (a very well paid civil servant) had been sent it in error and just bunged it my way to deal with. Just the CD.

I share my office with an external consultancy that provides software products to us. It was 3 days before I knew the envelope sitting on the desk next to mine was meant for me. I wonder how many copies got made of that CD? I wonder how many I never received?

So, despite all the stories, an experienced and senior IT TDA working in a government department still does not know anything about configuration management / logging receipt of code / ensuring valuable items are delivered / checking CDs don't get lost. It was not even protectively marked "Protect - Commercial In Confidence" to conform to the written instruction we were all sent about 2 months ago.

I'm sorry Kain, it is incompetence.

But what would I know? I'm just a contractor... so I think I'll stay anonymous.

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This post has been deleted by its author

"apologised unreservedly"

Has anyone been sacked or disciplined for this? Has anything done that might actually deter this from happening again?

No? Then you've reserved quite a f---ing lot, in actual fact.

What a stupid phrase.

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Unhappy

@AC

"Further more, if the disc had been crafted such that it was a bomb that went off once it reached a particular angular velocity (ie spinning in a drive)"

You [b]can[/b] take paranoia a step too far you know.

Is this idea even feasible? It needs to be a stable explosive, and be effectively concealed in something that genuinely resembles a CD-ROM disk and have the necessary mechanism to trigger at a certain spin speed, but not when chucked around in the post...

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Anonymous Coward

@Steve Evans

And there would therefore be no evidence that the disk was copied or left in the office.

Which is completely different to there being evidence that the disk was not copied or left in the office.

It's all in the way you phrase things.

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Bronze badge

I bet the procedure wasn't defined in the IT contract.

I remember several commenters in the past taking the trouble to explain the hassles for a government IT supplier doing anything which isn't already defined in the contract.

Want to bet that there's no procedure to cover apparently mis-delivered CDs (which are a security risk--trojans, vurses, and stuff)?

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