Illinois Facebook Users Could Get Facebook Privacy Settlement Money Soon

Beginning in early May, Illinois Facebook users may finally begin to receive their $397 checks resulting from a landmark privacy settlement with the social media giant. Facebook reached this settlement with the state over a year ago after it was sued in a class action suit for violating Illinois’ biometric privacy law.

The case was first filed in 2015, alleging that Facebook’s use of facial recognition and tagging technology violated the state’s law. Last fall, because of pressure like this, the company announced it would end its facial recognition program and delete all the data it had gathered. However, that action was too little, too late to avoid the consequences of this case. And this could only be the beginning. According to experts, many states could enact similar laws and pursue similar cases against Facebook.

“I do see that eventually, states will be adopting models closer to the Illinois model, which in the future could slow down the indiscriminate use of these technologies, and at least could make these businesses think twice about potentially misusing, sharing or selling the data to other businesses or third parties,” privacy law expert Alexandra Franco told the Chicago Tribune.

What started as a simple case has ballooned to have massive consequences for Facebook. But any legal action that ends up in users being compensated for privacy violations is undoubtedly a good thing.

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