The Biometric Information Privacy Act, also known as BIPA, was passed by the Illinois legislature in a unanimous 2008 decision. The ACLU of Illinois led this initiative.
Establishing notice and consent requirements for businesses
The law is meant to protect employees and individuals when it comes to businesses collecting their biometric data. Some common forms of biometric information affected by this employment law include:
- Facial geometry
- Iris scans
- Retina scans
Common examples of this are when an employer saves someone's fingerprint for a convenient and secure login to their timekeeping system. The law requires a private company to meet three conditions before collection of this information.
First, a company can only collect biometric data when the person has been given a written notification of the information that is to be stored or collected.
Additionally, all companies are required by BIPA to provide the individual with written notice of why their biometric data is being collected. This written statement must also detail how long this collection process will take place as well as the length of time it will be used and stored.
And finally, the private company must get the written consent of the individual they collect data from.
BIPA offers more protection than any other U.S. biometric privacy law
The standards established by BIPA for Illinois businesses around handling their customer's data are the most protective law for biometric privacy in the United States. It is a unique law that allows employees and consumers to take a business to court if they believe their biometric privacy has been violated.
Beyond the notice and consent required under BIPA, it is also a violation of this law for a company to sell or profit in any way from the biometric data of an employee or consumer. At the heart of this act is the notion that people own this information, and companies should be prevented from using it for their corporate interests.
The law was put in place for good reason. Call USA Employment Lawyers today to see how we can help protect your privacy rights.