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District Court finalizes BIPA class action settlement

Privacy/Cyber Risk & Data Security BIPA Class Action State Issues Courts Settlement Illinois

Privacy, Cyber Risk & Data Security

On January 24, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois granted final approval to a nearly $877,000 class action settlement to resolve allegations that a food manufacturer’s fingerprint-based timekeeping system violated Illinois’ Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA). Class members (both direct employees and temporary staffing workers who worked for the defendant between June 2015 and the date of preliminary approval) alleged that the defendant (i) collected biometric fingerprint identifiers and information without receiving informed written consent from employees; (ii) processed these identifiers and information “without establishing and following a publicly available data retention schedule and destruction policy”; and (iii) disclosed the employees’ identifiers and information to its timekeeping vendor without consent. The defendant contended that since 2020 it has maintained BIPA consents and compliance policies, and “does not retain any finger scan data for separated Illinois employees.” While denying all liability and wrongdoing, the defendant has agreed to pay $876,750 to cover class member payments, attorney fees and costs, settlement administrator costs, and the class representative’s service award.

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