In an article published in Law360, Segal McCambridge Shareholder Joseph Kish and Senior Associate Erica Bury discuss the financial ramifications companies face for improperly retaining biometric information, especially under Illinois’ Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA). The authors point to a recent decision that levied fines of liquidated damages of $1,000 per negligent violation or $5,000 per intentional violation, though they stress it is unclear how the court came to these specific amounts.
“Because a violation involving a biometric identifier often results in limited damages, there have been very few cases alleging actual damages, although there has been significant litigation regarding whether the liquidated amounts violate the 14th Amendment,” the authors write. “At the same time, the BIPA legislature created a private right of action for citizens to bring lawsuits without the requirement of seeking any administrative remedies or providing potential defendants with any safe harbor based on corrective action.”
Kish and Bury advise due diligence and proactive measures to avoid such costly potential BIPA violations.
“Companies should conduct an audit of their practices, procedures, and documentation if they use biometric identifiers in any way, shape, or form in order to confirm their compliance with the provisions of BIPA,” they write.
Read the story in full; click here (subscriber-based).