Facebook is exposed to a millionaire lawsuit for the alleged use of facial recognition without the consent of the users. The ruling has been issued by the San Francisco Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in favor of a group of Illinois students, from the Patel case, who accuse the company of failing to comply with state law and its Biometric Information Privacy Act .
The alleged Facebook privacy violation could involve up to seven million users
This lawsuit has been in court since 2015. The court has concluded that “the development of a facial template that uses facial recognition technology without consent invades the private affairs and specific interests of the individual,” so the plaintiffs could continue Go ahead with the judicial process.
For the alleged violation of privacy and the damages that it has produced, the Biometric Information Privacy Law establishes compensation between 1,000 and 5,000 dollars per plaintiff, which in this case would be up to seven million users.
The ACLU Speech, Privacy and Technology Project staff attorney has said in a statement that this decision is a strong recognition of the dangers of unrestricted use of facial surveillance technology.
He has also indicated that “the ability to instantly identify and track people based on their faces increases the chilling potential of privacy violations on an unprecedented scale. Both corporations and the government now realize that this technology poses unique risks to people’s privacy and security. ”
For its part, Facebook does not intend to sit idly by. “We have always revealed our use of facial recognition technology and that people can activate or deactivate it at any time,” said a spokesman for the company.
This fine would not be the first that the United States government would impose on Facebook, which only a few weeks ago faced a $ 5,000 million sanction, the largest individual sanction imposed against a company, for its privacy issues during the case of Cambridge Analytica