You Have Until Sept. 24 to Claim Part of $100M Google Photos Privacy Settlement
Time is running out for eligible Illinois residents to claim part of a lawsuit settlement payment from Google.
Anyone living in The Prairie State between May 1, 2015 and April 25, 2022 who appeared in a Google Photos image has a week left to apply for their cut of the $100 million settlement fund.
The lawsuit, filed in 2016, alleges Google Photos’ Face Grouping tool violated the Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA) by collecting and storing details about people’s faces without proper notice and consent. Google, which allegedly failed to inform users of the specific purpose their data would serve (among other stipulations), later settled for $100 million
In its defense, a company spokesperson told CNET that Face Grouping, which lets users organize images of the same person using facial recognition algorithms, “is only visible to you and you can easily turn off this functionality if you choose.”
Eligible participants in the lawsuit could receive as much as $400, but the actual cash amount will vary by individual and depends on the number of valid claims (and deductions for court-approved fees, costs, and expenses).
The deadline to submit a claim form is Saturday, Sept. 24. A final court hearing to determine whether the settlement and associated legal fees are “fair, reasonable, and adequate” will be broadcast via Zoom on Sept. 28 at 10:30 a.m.
It’s been a banner year for Illinoisans, more than a million of whom earlier this year received a $397 settlement payment from Facebook. The social network in 2021 agreed to pay $650 million to end a class-action privacy lawsuit accusing it of collecting and storing biometric data without consent.
Snapchat, meanwhile, recently agreed to a $35 million class action settlement resolving claims that certain app features violate BIPA. The deadline to file a claim is Nov. 5; a final approval hearing will be held Nov. 17.