Informed consent violations alleged in two new suits filed under Illinois’ biometric regulation
A sustainable lighting equipment company and medical supply manufacturer and distributor are the latest companies to be hit by potential class action law suits under Illinois’ Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA), both for failing to meet the Act’s requirements for informed consent relating to fingerprint time and attendance systems.
Law360 reports that Conservation Technology, otherwise known as Con-Tech Lighting, is accused by a former employee of using a hand-geometry system for years, and then beginning in April a fingerprint system from Kronos Inc., and had shared employee biometric data with its parent company Leviton Manufacturing Co. Inc., without policies in place for the collection, retention, and destruction of the data.
Medline Industries, meanwhile, is accused by a former employee of failing to inform employees of the collection, purpose for use, or storage and use duration of biometric data, as well as failing to collect consent from employees. Former Medline employee Quatisha Marshall claims that she cannot determine whether the company has kept her fingerprint data since she left it, and alleges that it may be sharing the data with a third party, without employee consent, as part of its timekeeping system.
Both suits are seeking injunctions to prevent further BIPA violations, as well as damages. The suit against Con-Tech by former employee Linda Kane alleges that her biometric data is economically valuable, and that the commercialization of biometrics will only increase this value.
The number of suit filed under BIPA seems to be increasing, with suits also filed against U-Tec and Chicago Loews Hotel filed in recent weeks.