The Illinois Supreme Court, on 25th January, passed a significant decision which said that when companies accumulate biometric data like fingerprints or face prints without notifying that person about what data they will collect, they can be sued. The Illinois law known as the Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA) requires that companies clearly inform a person about biometric data they will collect, and also notify them how the data will be stored and used by the company.
The BIPA law means that before capturing such biometric details including fingerprints, facial scans, iris scans, or other biological information, the company has to receive prior consent from that person. As other states only permit Attorneys General to sue companies, the Illinois BIPA law provides individuals the right to sue companies. After which, they can collect damages of $1,000 per negligent violation or $5,000 per deliberate or reckless violation of the Act.
As noted by Illinois.org, while facial recognition technology and biometric does have the potential to elucidate the citizens’ life, the BIPA may affect technological breakthroughs overall. The litigation may have the ability to drive up costs- on both ends of the spectrum. So now businesses like Apple, who have manifested the significance of biometric technology, will have to take extra precautions to comply with the Biometric Information Privacy Act. However, there is the expense of class-action lawyers and litigants if the law is violated.