Illinois residents who used Hinge, OkCupid or Tinder and went through the photo or selfie verification process.
What’s Going On?
Attorneys working with ClassAction.org have reason to believe the dating apps illegally collected users’ facial geometries when they were asked to upload a video selfie to confirm they matched their photos. They’re now gathering users to take action against the dating platforms over potential privacy violations.
What Am I Signing Up For?
You’re signing up to take part in something known as “mass arbitration.” While different than a class action lawsuit, this relatively new legal technique allows a large group of people to simultaneously take action over an alleged wrongdoing.
Does It Cost Anything to Sign Up?
It costs nothing to sign up and the attorneys only get paid if they win your claim.
Could I Get Money from This?
There are no guarantees; however, Illinois privacy law states that companies may be required to pay up to $5,000 per violation.
Attorneys working with ClassAction.org would like to hear from Illinois residents who used Hinge, OkCupid or Tinder and had to upload a video selfie to verify that they were the person in their photos.
The attorneys have reason to believe the dating apps violated an Illinois law called the Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA) by collecting and storing users’ facial geometries—i.e., measurements of a person’s face that can be used to identify them—without providing required disclosures and obtaining proper consent.
Under the privacy law, companies may be required to pay up to $5,000 per violation.
How Could Dating Apps Violate Users’ Privacy?
Hinge, OkCupid and Tinder, which are all owned by Match Group, have rolled out an identity verification feature called photo or selfie verification that allows users to upload a video selfie and confirm that they are a real person who matches the person in their profile pictures.
The dating apps specify on their websites that a user’s video selfie must first pass a “Liveness Check” to determine whether the video was digitally altered or manipulated. Then the video undergoes a “3D Face Authentication” step, during which facial recognition technology is used to extract the person’s facial geometry and determine whether it matches the face in their profile pictures.
Facial geometries fall into a category of personal information called biometric identifiers that are covered by the Biometric Information Privacy Act, an Illinois law passed in 2008 that aims to regulate how companies use consumers’ unique biometric data—including fingerprints, voice prints, iris and retina scans, and hand and face geometry.
The BIPA specifies that before a company collects and stores consumers’ biometric information, it must first inform them in writing that their information is being collected and stored and state the purpose and length of time for which the data will be collected, stored and used. The company must also develop and publish a retention schedule detailing when the data will be destroyed and secure proper consent from consumers in the form of a written release authorizing the collection and use of their biometric information.
The attorneys working with ClassAction.org have reason to believe that Hinge, OkCupid and Tinder may have violated users’ privacy by failing to properly meet these disclosure and consent requirements before collecting and storing biometric information—and they’re now gathering Illinois users to potentially take action against the dating apps by way of mass arbitration.
What Is Mass Arbitration? Is This a Lawsuit?
Mass arbitration is a relatively new legal technique that is different from a class action lawsuit but still allows a group of consumers to essentially band together to take action over an alleged wrongdoing.
…[M]ass arbitration occurs when hundreds or thousands of consumers file individual arbitration claims against the same company over the same issue at the same time. The aim of a mass arbitration proceeding is to grant relief on a large scale (similar to a class action lawsuit) for those who sign up. ”
How Much Does This Cost?
It costs nothing to sign up, and you won’t need to pay the attorneys if they don’t win your claim. The attorneys will only be paid if they win money on your behalf, and their payment will come as a percentage of the amount you’re awarded.
How Much Could I Get?
There are no guarantees that you’ll win, but Illinois law states that consumers may be entitled to as much as $5,000 for each violation.