Are you owed money from Snapchat’s $35 million facial recognition settlement?

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After being accused of breaking Illinois law, Snap, the parent company of Snapchat, accepted a $35 million class action lawsuit settlement.

In court filings this month, the plaintiffs — all Illinois residents who used Snapchat — said Snap did not seek written consent before collecting and storing facial recognition and email data. other biometric information as required by the Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA).

Snap isn’t the first social media company to break the law: in 2020, Facebook agreed to a $550 million settlement after being sued for collecting biometrics to tag photos without complying with BIPA. In June, Google agreed to pay $100 million to settle a lawsuit alleging that Google Photos’ facial recognition program violated the settlement.

This week again, a judge granted final approval for a $92 million settlement with TikTok for charges, he broke state law.

Snapchat’s $35 million payment has been tentatively accepted, but a final approval hearing is scheduled for November 17, 2022.

Here’s what you need to know about Snapchat’s biometric privacy case, including what the law says, who’s eligible to file a claim, and when they might get a check.

To learn more about the class action settlements, find out if you’re eligible for money from Capital One’s $190 million payout, T-Mobile’s $350 million data breach case, or T-Mobile’s $90 million data tracking payment Facebook.

What is the Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Law?

Passed unanimously by lawmakers in Springfield in 2008, the Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA) is one of the toughest privacy laws in the country, requiring companies to collect biometric data – unique facial, voice and eye characteristics; fingerprint scans; heart rhythms – to take certain precautions.

According to the complaint, BIPA “prohibits private entities from collecting, capturing, purchasing, commercially receiving, or otherwise obtaining a person’s biometric information” unless the user signs an informed consent waiver that informs them specific use, duration will be stored and when they will be permanently destroyed, among other provisions.

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Snapchat lenses can add bunny ears, sunglasses, and other virtual elements to your selfie clips.

Snapchat

What is Snap accused of in the biometric privacy lawsuit?

Plaintiffs in Boone, et al. v. Snap Inc. allege that Snap collected and stored Illinois users’ biometric data but did not notify them, thereby violating BIPA.

In a statement to CNET, a Snap spokesperson said the company denies the allegations, adding that the “limited data” used by Snapchat Lenses stays on the user’s phone and is not stored in a database. central. Additionally, the spokesperson said, “Snapchat Lenses do not collect biometric data that can be used to identify a specific person or perform facial identification.”

The lenses – which can add bunny ears, whiskers and other augmented reality features – can “identify an eye or a nose as part of a face, but cannot identify an eye or a nose as belonging to a specific person,” the rep said.

An example of an augmented Snapchat lens

Instantaneous

Who is eligible for a Snapchat settlement payout?

Anyone who has lived in Illinois within the past five years and has used a Snapchat lens or filter at any time since November 17, 2015 can submit a claim. on line Where by mail.

To file a claim, you must provide your full legal name, Snapchat username, and a valid Illinois address where you resided during the Class Period.

Additionally, you must submit a personal statement that you lived in Illinois for at least six months during the course period and used Snapchat lenses or filters during that time.

How much can I get from Snapchat settlement?

According to settlement websiteClass Members who submit a valid and timely Claim Form may receive “prorated payment from the Settlement Fund” after payment of attorneys’ fees, administration fees and other expenses.

The exact amount each member of the group will receive has not been determined, although The ChicagoTribune reports that individual payouts will likely range between $58 and $117.

What is the deadline for filing a complaint?

You have until November 5, 2022 to file a claim. (Mail claims must be postmarked by November 5.) If you want to opt out of the settlement and file a separate lawsuit, the deadline is October 6.

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