Some personal data comes under the heading of special categories of personal data. This type of data is subject to further regulations under current data protection legislation and can only be processed under certain circumstances Some personal data comes under the heading of special categories of personal data. This type of data is subject to further regulations under current data protection legislation and can only be processed under certain circumstances Personal data is classed as belonging to "special categories" under current data protection legislation if it includes any of the following types of information about an identifiable, living individual: racial or ethnic origin political opinions religious beliefs trade union membership physical or mental health sexual life or sexual orientation commission of offences or alleged offences genetic data biometric data The updated guidance from the Information Commissioner's Office for genetic data states: “So, in practice, genetic analysis which includes enough genetic markers to be unique to an individual is personal data and special category genetic data, even if you have removed other names or identifiers. And any genetic test results which are linked to a specific biological sample are usually personal data, even if the results themselves are not unique to the individual, because the sample is by its nature specific to an individual and provides the link back to their specific genetic identity.” The University of Edinburgh interprets this as follows: In certain cases, a single or few markers in genetic analysis will not be sufficient to make genetic data identifiable, if used in research without phenotypes or other identifiable data. This, however, will be a very rare occurrence. In all other cases, genetic analysis will be considered identifiable and therefore personal data.