An Illinois man has sued Snapchat for alleged violations of a state law that requires users to expressly consent to instances in which their biometric information is used.
Northern California District Judge not swayed by Facebook’s Terms of Service arguments.
The proposed class-action lawsuit, known as Jose Martinez v. Snapchat, was originally filed in May 2016 in a Los Angeles County court but was transferred to federal court on Thursday at Snapchat’s behest.
Back in September 2015, the Los Angeles-based startup acquired a facial recognition firm called Looksery. Snapchat then incorporated features from Looksery’s selfie app (also called Looksery) into a new app dubbed “Lenses.” These features, which allow the app to draw animated additions to a person’s face, quickly became one of Snapchat’s most popular.
However, in order to make those animations work, the app has to scan a person’s face and store its biometric identifiers. And that, according to the lawsuit, is exactly the problem.
Plaintiff claims Facebook violates Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act.
As Martinez’s lawyers argue: “Snapchat never informed Illinois users, such as Plaintiffs, …