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Bella Elevator Biometrics Collection for Clocking In BIPA Illinois Class Action

In recent years, more and more employers have had employees provide biometric identifiers or information for timekeeping or other job-related purposes. Illinois is one of the few states that has begun to try to regulate the collecting, storing, and use of biometrics, through its Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA). The complaint for this class action alleges that Bella Elevator, LLC has not followed the requirements of this law in collecting the biometrics of its employees.

The class for this action is all individuals who, while living in Illinois, had their fingerprints collected, captured, or otherwise obtained or stored by Bella.

Biometric information presents problems that other private or identifying information does not. If your credit card information is stolen, you can get another credit card with a different number. However, if someone steals your fingerprints, you cannot get another set of fingers with different prints.

The complaint ticks off a number of provisions in BIPA for the collection, storage, and use of biometrics in Illinois:

  • Private entities collecting biometrics must inform the subject, in writing, of the specific purpose and length of time for which the biometrics will be used.
  • These entities must also publish written retention schedules, which are publicly available, providing guidelines for the permanent destruction of biometrics on file with them. (Permanent destruction must take place, at the longest, three years after the entity’s last interaction with the individual.)
  • In storing, transmitting, and otherwise handling biometrics, entities must use the same standard of care and methods that are at least as protective as those used with other confidential and sensitive personal information.
  • Finally, BIPA forbids entities from selling, renting, trading, or otherwise profiting from the biometrics of individuals.

Unfortunately, the complaint alleges that Bella Elevator did not do these things. Plaintiff Ashton Culp worked for Bella between April and June of 2019, and was required to clock in and out using his fingerprints.

“Yet,” the complaint contends, Bella “never adequately informed [Culp or others] of its biometrics collection practices, never obtained the required written authorization from [Culp or others] for the collection and use of the biometrics, and never offered [Culp or others] any access to retention or destruction policies regarding the biometrics collected.

The complaint asserts, “By collecting [Culp’s] unique biometric identifiers or biometric information without his consent, written or otherwise, [Bella] invaded [Culp’s] statutorily protected right to privacy in his biometrics.”

The two counts in the complaint both relate to the requirements of BIPA.

Article Type: Lawsuit
Topic: Privacy

Most Recent Case Event

Bella Elevator Biometrics Collection for Clocking In BIPA Illinois Complaint

February 9, 2021

In recent years, more and more employers have had employees provide biometric identifiers or information for timekeeping or other job-related purposes. Illinois is one of the few states that has begun to try to regulate the collecting, storing, and use of biometrics, through its Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA). The complaint for this class action alleges that Bella Elevator, LLC has not followed the requirements of this law in collecting the biometrics of its employees.

Bella Elevator Biometrics Collection for Clocking In BIPA Illinois Complaint

Case Event History

Bella Elevator Biometrics Collection for Clocking In BIPA Illinois Complaint

February 9, 2021

In recent years, more and more employers have had employees provide biometric identifiers or information for timekeeping or other job-related purposes. Illinois is one of the few states that has begun to try to regulate the collecting, storing, and use of biometrics, through its Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA). The complaint for this class action alleges that Bella Elevator, LLC has not followed the requirements of this law in collecting the biometrics of its employees.

Bella Elevator Biometrics Collection for Clocking In BIPA Illinois Complaint
Tags: BIPA, Biometric Data, Taking/Storing/Using Biometric Data, Your Privacy