Documents to download

A new regime governing the retention of fingerprints and DNA data by the police in England and Wales was introduced by the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012. The relevant provisions were brought into force on 31 October 2013. Prior to the commencement of these provisions the police were able to retain fingerprint and DNA data taken from individuals arrested for a recordable offence for an indefinite period, irrespective of whether they were ultimately charged or convicted. Detailed rules are now in place regarding when and for how long the police may retain an individual’s DNA data and fingerprints.

This note sets out the current legal framework in England and Wales and outlines the background to the changes made by the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012.

Individuals requiring legal advice on the retention of their fingerprints or DNA data should consult an appropriately qualified professional.


Documents to download

Related posts

  • Firearm Crime Statistics: England & Wales

    This briefing looks at statistics on gun crime in England and Wales. It uses police recorded crime data to evaluate trends over time and to compare crime between police force areas, with a section focusing specifically on gun crime in London. Type of offence and type of weapon used are also analysed, as well as age and ethnicity of victims.

    Firearm Crime Statistics: England & Wales
  • Police powers: stop and search

    This Commons Library briefing paper discusses police stop and search powers. It outlines a recent history of their reform and available evidence on their effectiveness at reducing and detecting crime.

    Police powers: stop and search
  • Police powers: Strip searching

    This Commons Library briefing paper discusses police powers to conduct "strip searches". It outlines the procedures for conducting strip searches; the available evidence on the use of strip searches; and recent debate about the impact they can have.

    Police powers: Strip searching