Florida considers biometric data privacy law with private action rights like BIPA

A pair of Florida lawmakers are proposing legislation to require private companies using consumers’ biometric data to obtain informed consent and apply protections to it in storage, WJCT News reports.

The Florida Biometric Information Privacy Act, brought by Senator Gary Farmer and Representative Bobby DuBose, proposes requiring written notice of biometric data collection, use, and storage practices, considering the data as confidential and sensitive information for the application of industry standards, and making businesses liable for the unauthorized distribution of biometric data.

“The Florida Biometric Information Privacy Act would ensure that all Floridians are notified in writing that their biometric information is being collected and what the process is for the use of those most private identifiers by organizations seeking it. This common-sense legislation will give Floridians the peace of mind to know that their most valuable information is being handled responsibly and that these private companies will be held accountable for the improper use or unauthorized distribution of their information,” DuBose says.

An assessment of the proposed law by Freeborn & Peters LLP Partner Robert A. Stines (PDF) notes that the legislation includes a right of private action from $1,000 to $5,000, which is the same as Illinois’ controversial BIPA, as well as a proposed New York City law.

Disney theme parks have used fingerprint biometrics to dissuade ticket sharing for years, though the company says it does not collect or store biometric data.

The law is proposed to take effect on October 1, 2019.

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