Texas attorney general sues Meta over biometric data collection

In the USA, the attorney general (AG) of Texas has sued Meta – formerly Facebook – for capturing and using biometric data without properly obtaining the users’ informed consent. The AG argues that the company has breached Texas’ Capture or use of biometric identified act and the Deceptive trade practices act by illegally capturing and exploiting biometric identifiers contained in photos and videos uploaded by users on the social media platform – without the users’ knowledge or permission. Moreover, users’ personal information is said to have been disclosed to other entities ‘who further exploited it’. Meta is accused of ‘knowingly captur[ing] biometric information for its own commercial benefit, to train and improve its facial recognition technology, and thereby creat[ing] a powerful artificial intelligence (AI) apparatus that reaches all corners of the world and ensnares even those who have intentionally avoided using Facebook services’. In reaction, Meta said that the ‘claims are without merit’ and that the company would defend itself ‘vigorously’.