Ancestry DNA

Founded back in 1996, is the largest “for-profit” genealogy company in the world. 

Who Are

Using its size and database Ancestry are the world's leading geneaology website as well as one of the best-known providers of DNA testing. A private company with a number of notable equity investors. 

The Ancestry brand includes : Ancestry; Ancestry DNA; AncestryProGenealogists; Archives; Fold3;; and Find A Grave. 

AncestryDNA was launched in 2012. It employs 1,700 people, the majority of whom are based in Utah, US



What Parts of the World Do They operate In?

AncestryDNA is available in more than 30 international markets. It offers localized websites in nine countries - US, Canada, Germany, France, Italy, Sweden, Australia, Mexico and the UK.

How Big Is the Database?

AncestryDNA has more than 15 million people DNA tested, this makes it the largest in the world. This means it has 20 billion records, 100 million family trees and 13 billion connections. In addition, it has 3 million paying subscribers.


What Tests Are Offered?

Relating to DNA testing, offers two key products :

  • AncestryDNA
  • AncestryHealth




This is the test to take if you want to find out more about your family history. You should get two outcomes with this test-a prediction of your genetic ethnicity and a way of then finding family connections.

What Science is behind AncestryDNA?

Based on a small saliva sample, your Ancestry test uses microarray based autosomal DNA testing which looks at your entire genome at over 700,000 locations. Autosomal testing means that the 22 pairs of chromosomes, that aren’t the x or y chromosome that determines your biological sex, are included. This means that men and women can take the test and information will then come from both the maternal and paternal line.

What Are the Timescales?

You will normally get your kit within 7-10 working days and then results are available within 6-8 weeks. Results can be viewed online.



How Accurate is the Test?

Ancestry say that during the testing they hold each DNA sample to a quality standard of at least 98%. They compare your DNA with collections of DNA from around the world to look for matches, for similarities. The advantage of Ancestry here is the sheer size of the database they are using.


Where is the Testing Carried Out?

DNA testing happens in a third-party lab in the US.


How Safe is your DNA Sample?

All DNA data is stored in encrypted databases so that a person’s identity is protected. You have to give permission to take part in further research to better understand ethnity and population traits.

Ancestry say that they do not share your genetic information with employers, insurance providers or third party marketers without your consent. They are clear in stating that you own your data but they need to have the ability to use your data as they set out in the terms and conditions. You can download your raw DNA data and you can permanently delete your data