I found this article while looking for something else, and it is worth a look. It shows that the NCIC system of matching dental records of missing persons and deceased persons is flawed. If I had a missing loved one who was eliminated through dentals, I would be very concerned. It's a long article, but worth the read. I pulled the most relivent part, but please see the link for the full article. "Complicated system Twenty years ago, when NCIC's dental program was established, the computer was programmed to sift through all information available. Everything from hair and eye color, stature, age, gender, scars, marks, tattoos, dental characteristics and other features were mixed into one search, with the computer told to pay more attention to physical descriptions than to dental information. "Scars, marks and tattoos, we know they do generate positive hits," Bell said. The problem is, a person's physical characteristics can change drastically from the time they go missing to the time a body is found. The computer reports a match only if the points of similarity add up to a threshold score, but because of the weight placed on other factors, a perfect dental match alone won't meet the minimum score. The results often mean that a computer search yields long lists of potential, but incorrect, matches -- say 50 blue-eyed, blonde-haired women about 25 years old. Often, the dental records for candidates clearly do not match the teeth of the victim. Local police typically must check each potential match by making time-consuming and usually futile phone calls and other inquiries. Simply assigning more points to dental comparisons might not fix the problem. Nationwide, dentists chart and submit dental records to the national computer. Such entries are consistently riddled with mistakes. That's because even experienced dentists without forensics training come up with far different interpretations under NCIC guidelines when charting the same teeth because the form is complicated and subjective. Years after learning about the system's flaws, the FBI in 1996 appointed Bell and other experts to a task force to examine improvements. Three years later, NCIC's policy advisory board approved the panel's recommendations to upgrade the system by creating two separate searches -- one of physical descriptors and another involving a more simplified dental record comparison. But because missing and unidentified persons represent only a fraction of the data in NCIC, criminal information deemed more pressing -- everything from alerts about wanted criminals to the license numbers of stolen cars -- took precedence in a 2000 upgrade. The FBI now says it plans to add a stand-alone dental search program in December, although all states must update their own systems by then to use it. "The advisory board had to make priorities," Davis said. According to a P-I survey, 47 states depend entirely on the NCIC system when using dental records in trying to make "cold hit matches" by computer to identify bodies. Many state identification officials said they were unaware that the computer they trust simply doesn't work. In the meantime, no one knows how many of the roughly 5,000 unidentified bodies and 100,000 missing persons the NCIC has on file are good matches the computer cannot spot -- just as it did not after a skull was found beneath a log in the Kettle River's floodplain, just before dark one early October day in 1991."