Illinois woman files class action lawsuit against Target for collecting biometric data without consent

An Illinois woman has taken legal action against Target, initiating a class action lawsuit accusing the retail giant of unlawfully collecting and storing her biometric data without her consent.

The plaintiff, Arnetta Dean, filed the lawsuit in hopes of preventing Target from further violating the privacy rights of Illinois residents. She is also pursuing statutory damages for the company's alleged collection, storage and use of customers' biometric data.

The lawsuit alleges that Target violated the state's Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA) by collecting, storing and using biometric information without getting written consent from customers or providing them with adequate information about data retention and destruction policies.

According to the lawsuit, biometric data, like facial recognition information, is different from other identifiers, such as social security numbers, because it is biologically unique to individuals and cannot be easily changed if compromised, putting individuals at risk of identity theft.

BIPA, enacted by the Illinois Legislature, mandates requirements for the collection and use of biometric data by private entities. Among its provisions, BIPA states that companies must receive written consent from individuals before collecting their biometric data. Additionally, companies must inform individuals of the specific purpose and duration of data collection and publicly publish retention schedules and guidelines for destroying such data.

The lawsuit alleges that Target failed to comply with these requirements by not informing consumers about the collection of biometric data and failing to obtain written consent. Additionally, it claims that Target's surveillance systems, including cameras with facial recognition technology installed in Illinois stores, collect biometric data without notifying customers.

Under BIPA, individuals have a private right of action to sue for violations, with damages ranging from $1,000 for negligent violations to $5,000 for intentional or reckless violations, along with attorneys' fees and injunctive relief.

The complete complaint can be found HERE and is also attached below: