Action needed: protect your biometric privacy!

Today, as Mark Zuckerburg goes in front of a combined Senate committee hearing to again explain his company's actions in their abusive practices in selling your data to Cambridge Analytica, industry groups partially funded by Facebook are in Springfield, Illinois trying to reduce the legal protections we have around our personal biometric data.

Biometrics are the data that physically identify you. These can be everything from genetic material, to blood type, to fingerprints, to identifying facial photographs. Unlike an email address, a password, or credit card number, your biometrics don't change. If they are spread or shared without your knowledge or consent, you cannot go back and change them and invalidate the old data. This by necessity means everyday people should have more control over their personal biometric information.

In Illinois, the Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA) is the country's leading and most comprehensive legislation to protect this sensitive information. It provides consumers reasonable control over their data, while allowing companies to still make use of it should they get consent from the people they collect this data from.

Facebook and others would love nothing but to see BIPA ended so they can continue collecting personal data to sell to companies like Cambridge Analytica in the future. To do so, they've introduced IL SB 3053, which creates loopholes so large in BIPA a company would have to be trying to wind up regulated under the proposed changes. SB 3053 must not be allowed out of committee!

To register your opposition to the bill, please visit the IL General Assembly witness slip page for the bill. Fill out:

  1. Your personal details
  2. Who you represent. "Self" if you're just signing for yourself, otherwise the group you're speaking on behalf of.
  3. Select opposition to the original bill, and "Record of Appearance Only". 

Together, we can help save Illinois privacy protections!