Security, privacy, and trust management in DNA computing

Maria Fernandes, Jérémie Decouchant, Francisco M. Couto

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedings/Edited volumeChapterScientificpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
58 Downloads (Pure)


DNA computing is an emerging field that aims at enabling more efficient data storage and processing. One principle of DNA computing is to encode some information (e.g., image, video, programming scripts) into a digital DNA-like sequence and then synthesize the corresponding DNA molecule. Synthesizing this molecule using digital or real human genomic fragments theoretically opens the possibility for privacy attacks, which have been demonstrated on a large array of human genomic data. These privacy attacks aim at breaching the privacy of DNA samples, allowing an attacker to discover privacy-critical information from the partial or complete DNA information of an individual. In the context of DNA computing, novel privacy attacks will certainly emerge and could consist in discovering a part of a particular script or video that is privacy-critical. It is therefore important to consider whether privacy attacks and defense mechanisms can be used when manipulating genomic data. First, this chapter provides the background about genomic data, and its modern generation and processing. It then provides a survey on known genomic privacy attacks, and presents the privacy-enhancing technologies that have been designed to protect genomic data. Later, this chapter also introduces the current trust management methods one can rely on to further secure DNA storage and processing methods, before discussing how DNA computing currently relates to those attacks and privacy-preserving technologies. Finally, this chapter presents future research avenues.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPerspective of DNA Computing in Computer Science
EditorsSuyel Namasudra
PublisherAcademic Press
Number of pages43
ISBN (Print)9780323855464
Publication statusPublished - 2023

Publication series

NameAdvances in Computers
ISSN (Print)0065-2458

Bibliographical note

Green Open Access added to TU Delft Institutional Repository ‘You share, we take care!’ – Taverne project
Otherwise as indicated in the copyright section: the publisher is the copyright holder of this work and the author uses the Dutch legislation to make this work public.


  • DNA security
  • DNA sensitivity
  • Privacy attacks
  • Privacy-preserving techniques
  • Trust management


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