After a landmark class-action lawsuit, Facebook has agreed to pay $650 million in a settlement. Users had sued Facebook in 2015 over facial scanning. At first, the company settled for $500 million, but it has added $100 million to the final package.
Why Did They Sue Facebook Over Facial Recognition Tech?
The class-action lawsuit accused Facebook of violating an Illinois privacy law. According to the law, companies have to get “explicit consent” from people for their photos. Facebook broke this law with its “tag suggestions” feature. The tech allowed Facebook to scan user’s faces. Then, Facebook used the scanned faces to tag newly uploaded photos.
How Will Facebook Pay the Users for Its Facial Recognition Tech Violations?
Facebook will pay $650 million to Illinois users whose faces appeared on the site since 2011. Fortune reports that the court will divide the money. People could receive up to $400. If you’re an affected user, you will get your money by 2021.
Is Facebook the Only Company Using Facial Recognition Tech?
Fortune adds that Google and Shutterfly have also broken the Illinois law. They had told the court that the law did not apply to them. However, the court did not listen to them.
If Facebook did not settle, the company would have to pay Illinois users around $47 billion. The Illinois law allowed penalties up to $5,000. Facebook had stopped automatic facial recognition in 2019.