Estée Lauder Companies, Inc. faces another proposed class action lawsuit over its apparently undisclosed collection of consumers’ biometric facial scans in Illinois.
The 23-page case says that despite consumer concern over facial-scanning technology and the clear mandates set by the Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA), Estée Lauder has nevertheless “refused” to inform or gain consent from those who use its Virtual Try-On tool before collecting their facial scans.
“Estée Lauder has violated [the] BIPA—and continues to violate [the] BIPA—each and every time a website visitor based in Illinois uses the Virtual Try-On tool, because Estée Lauder continues to collect and store or facilitate the storage of biometric information or biometric identifiers without disclosure to or consent of any of the consumers who try on cosmetics on their website, necessarily using Estée Lauder’s Virtual Try-On tool to do so,” the complaint alleges.
According to the filing, the BIPA requires private entities who collect, store or capture certain biometric identifiers—including fingerprints, retinal scans, voiceprints and facial geometries—to first take a number of steps to safeguard this type of data. Specifically, a private company must obtain informed consent from a consumer prior to capturing their biometric data, and the entity must also disclose the uses, retention of and a schedule for the destruction of the data, the suit states. Moreover, the Illinois law prohibits a company in possession of biometric identifiers from selling, leasing, trading or otherwise profiting from the information, the case says.
By law in Illinois, Estée Lauder must inform a consumer in writing that a biometric identifier or biometric information is being collected or stored, the case states. The company is also required to disclose in writing the “specific purpose and length of term” for which the biometric data will be collected, stored and used, according to the suit. Lastly, Estée Lauder must receive from a consumer a written release authorizing the collection of their biometric data, the lawsuit relays.
The filing notes that Estée Lauder’s makeup try-on tool is powered by YouCam Makeup, who the case says is owned by an artificial intelligence company that provides facial mapping technology services for beauty brands.
The lawsuit looks to cover all consumers whose biometric identifiers were captured by Estée Lauder through its Virtual Try-On tool on the company’s websites while residing in Illinois within the last four years.
Get class action lawsuit news sent to your inbox – sign up for ClassAction.org’s free weekly newsletter here.
Hair Relaxer Lawsuits
Women who developed ovarian or uterine cancer after using hair relaxers such as Dark & Lovely and Motions may now have an opportunity to take legal action.