Government proposals to retain DNA profiles for people arrested but not convicted of serious charges in Northern Ireland have been criticised by campaigners for being too harsh.
Under the Scottish system there is no retention of the data of innocent people except in the most grave cases, the Committee for the Administration of Justice (CAJ) said.
Measures announced by the Home Office said adults who are arrested but not convicted of a serious crime will have their profiles held for six years instead of the 12 proposed this summer.
But CAJ director Mike Ritchie said: "We can see no reason why this jurisdiction requires a harsher regime than Scotland."
Ministers were forced to review the current policy, which allows police to hold profiles of every person arrested indefinitely, after a European Court of Human Rights ruling last year.
Judges in Strasbourg said the "blanket" policy breached human rights because it treated everyone the same regardless of the offence or whether they were convicted.
Mr Ritchie added: "We would advocate the adoption of the Scottish model, where data is retained for three years, with the possibility of another two year extension by way of application to the courts, if police are concerned about the seriousness of the crime or where there is a sexual or "terrorist" element.
"Under the Scottish system, there is no other retention of data of unconvicted persons."
The Home Office defended the six-year retention period for DNA, irrespective of the seriousness of the crime for which they were arrested.
"The best available evidence indicates that the type of offence a person is first arrested for is not a good indicator of the seriousness of offences he might subsequently be arrested for or convicted of in the future," it said.
"As the retention of the DNA of innocent people is not punitive, but rather a measure to facilitate the detection of future offences, the government therefore conclude it is appropriate to have a single retention period."
Under yesterday's proposals terror suspects who are released without charge could face having their DNA profiles stored for life.
They could see the information on anyone arrested for terrorist offences, including those who are not charged or acquitted, kept indefinitely on the national database.
Under the plans, senior police officers would review each case every two years on national security grounds to see if holding onto the genetic profile of each individual was warranted.
Even under 18s arrested but not charged could have their DNA profiles stored for much longer periods than for other crimes.