Ireland's new DNA database is going live today.
It will run out of the Forensic Science Ireland base in the Phoenix Park, which has been allocated an additional €1.3m to staff and fund the initiative.
The database will help the Gardaí to close the net on serial offenders, and will also be used to help find and identify missing or unknown people.
Criminals who receive a sentence of five years or more will have a genetic sample kept on file, taken from crime scenes or from bodily samples such as hair or saliva.
It follows the recent publication of legislation to tackle repeat home burglars. Garda figures show that 75% of burglaries are committed by 25% of burglars.
Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald said: "The new DNA database is a hugely significant development in assisting the Garda Síochána in the investigation of crime."