Governance, Risk and Compliance, Americas

Texas AG Investigates Facebook’s Use of Biometric Identifiers


Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton is investigating Facebook for alleged violations of the Texas Business and Commercial Code, which contains provisions governing the collection, retention and disclosure of biometric data.

As we previously reported, Facebook recently reached a $650 million settlement for alleged violations of Illinois’ Biometric Information Privacy Act for their use of facial recognition software without permission from affected users.

Texas law defines a “biometric identifier” as “a retina or iris scan, fingerprint, voiceprint, or record of hand or face geometry.” While the exact violations alleged are not clear, Paxton has sought discovery material from the Illinois case, suggesting the investigation relates to the use of facial recognition in Facebook’s photo tagging function.

Texas law allows the Texas Attorney General to bring suit on behalf of injured parties, and allows for damages totaling up to $25,000 per violation.

Blog courtesy of Hunton Andrews Kurth, a U.S.-based law firm with a Global Privacy and Cybersecurity practice that’s known throughout the world for its deep experience, breadth of knowledge and outstanding client service. Read the company’s privacy blog here.