On Demand

The Biometric Privacy Revolution: Legal and Practical Considerations


Created on April 13, 2020




In recent years we have seen an explosion in the growth of private and public uses of biometric information for a wide variety of purposes. While individuals may willingly or unknowingly share their biometric data on a daily basis, currently there are few laws specifically regulating biometric collection and use. As technology rapidly evolves, companies are presented with an array of potential commercial opportunities and a dearth of guidance when it comes to developing compliant policies and procedures. At the same time, individuals often do not know who may have their biometric information and what, if any, remedies are at their disposal.

The Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act ("BIPA") is the most high-profile U.S. law in this space, with hundreds of lawsuits filed to date for alleged violations. Courts are just beginning to provide insights as to how the law should be interpreted. Meanwhile, city, state, federal, and foreign governments are considering a myriad of laws related to biometrics; so far these efforts have met with varying degrees of resistance and success.

This course, presented by Melinda McLellan and Robyn Feldstein, will address legal and practical issues concerning biometrics, surveying existing and proposed laws and regulations and offering pragmatic guidance for companies that seek to use biometric information for security and commercial purposes.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Review what constitutes a "biometric identifier" and explore the evolving uses of biometric information for both commercial and law enforcement purposes
  2. Examine the legal and regulatory landscape governing the collection, storage, and use of biometric information, including the impact of class-action lawsuits brought under Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act and proposed federal, state, and local legislation
  3. Assess emerging consumer sensitivity to biometric privacy issues with reference to domestic and international use cases and new frontiers in the exploitation of biometric data
  4. Identify steps businesses may take to comply with existing regulations and limit legal risks when seeking to use biometric information in the commercial context 

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