The mechanisms by which RNA acts in the DNA damage response (DDR), specifically in the repair of DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs), are emerging as multifaceted and complex. Different RNA species, including but not limited to; microRNA (miRNA), long non-coding RNA (lncRNA), RNA:DNA hybrid structures, the recently identified damage-induced lncRNA (dilncRNA), damage-responsive transcripts (DARTs), and DNA damage-dependent small RNAs (DDRNAs), have been shown to play integral roles in the DSB response. The diverse properties of these RNAs, such as sequence, structure, and binding partners, enable them to fulfil a variety of functions in different cellular contexts. Additionally, RNA can be modified post-transcriptionally, a process which is regulated in response to cellular stressors such as DNA damage. Many of these mechanisms are not yet understood and the literature contradictory, reflecting the complexity and expansive nature of the roles of RNA in the DDR. However, it is clear that RNA is pivotal in ensuring the maintenance of genome integrity. In this review, we will discuss and summarise recent evidence which highlights the roles of these various RNAs in preserving genomic integrity, with a particular focus on the emerging role of RNA in the DSB repair response. © 2020 The Author(s).