Ace Hotel Use of Employee Fingerprints for Timekeeping Illinois BIPA Class Action

The Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA), an Illinois law, was intended to begin to address the unique issues posed by the collection of biometric information, such as fingerprints or retinal scans. The complaint for this class action alleges that Ace Hotel Chicago, LLC collects employees’ biometric information but does not follow the requirements of BIPA.

The class for this action is all individuals whose fingerprints were collected, captured, stored, or otherwise obtained by Ace while they were living in Illinois.

The collection, storage, and use of biometrics presents unique privacy problems. While it’s relatively easy to cancel a compromised credit card and replace it with a new one with a different number, it is not possible, for example, to get new fingers to address stolen fingerprint information.

The plaintiff in this case, Noelle Del Toro, worked for Ace and was required to clock in using her fingerprints. However, the complaint alleges that Ace does not meet the requirements of BIPA relating to the collection, storage, and use of biometrics, which include fingerprint scans.

First, BIPA requires that private entities who want to collect or use biometrics provide subjects with written notice that their biometrics are being collected, and written notice of the specific purpose and length of time for which the biometrics will be stored and used.

In addition, the private entities must get informed, written consent from the subject before collecting the fingerprint scans or other biometric information.

Another provision of BIPA is that the entities collecting biometrics must develop retention schedules and guidelines for permanently destroying the biometrics. These must be put into practice when the biometrics are no longer needed for the original purpose, or when interactions between the collector and subject have ceased for three years, whichever comes first. The schedule and guidelines must be available to the public.

Also, in storing, transmitting, and protecting the biometric information, the complaint says, the entity must use “the same standard of care in the industry and in a manner at least as protective as the means used to protect other confidential and sensitive information.”

Finally, entities are expressly forbidden to sell, lease, trade, or otherwise profit from an individual’s biometrics.

According to the complaint, Del Toro was not given the required written notice and did not give her written informed consent before her biometrics were taken. The complaint says Ace also did not have the written, publicly-available retention schedule and guidelines for the destruction of the biometrics when their purpose had passed.

Article Type: Lawsuit
Topic: Privacy

Most Recent Case Event

Ace Hotel Use of Employee Fingerprints for Timekeeping Illinois BIPA Complaint

December 21, 2020

The Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA), an Illinois law, was intended to begin to address the unique issues posed by the collection of biometric information, such as fingerprints or retinal scans. The complaint for this class action alleges that Ace Hotel Chicago, LLC collects employees’ biometric information but does not follow the requirements of BIPA.

Ace Hotel Use of Employee Fingerprints for Timekeeping Illinois BIPA Complaint

Case Event History

Ace Hotel Use of Employee Fingerprints for Timekeeping Illinois BIPA Complaint

December 21, 2020

The Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA), an Illinois law, was intended to begin to address the unique issues posed by the collection of biometric information, such as fingerprints or retinal scans. The complaint for this class action alleges that Ace Hotel Chicago, LLC collects employees’ biometric information but does not follow the requirements of BIPA.

Ace Hotel Use of Employee Fingerprints for Timekeeping Illinois BIPA Complaint
Tags: Biometric Data, Taking/Storing/Using Biometric Data, Your Privacy