Social networking giant Facebook has been ordered to pay a compensation of $650 million to its users in Illinois. The order for settlement was passed by US District Judge James Docanto, in a class-action lawsuit that was filed by several Illinois Facebook users back in 2015.
Close to 1.4 million people had filed lawsuits against Facebook after the latter allegedly used the photo face tagging feature and stored images of people in Illinois, in its database, without the consent of users. The complainants referred to Illinois state's Biometric Information Privacy Act' that allows consumers to sue tech companies that don't take permission from the user before using their data like pictures or fingerprints.
Initially, the lawsuit was filed by Chicago attorney Jay Edelson who had hinted at the fact that the 'checks could be in the mail within two months unless the ruling is appealed.' Now, as the number of cases being filed against the social networking giant piled, Docanto observed “It will put at least $345 (roughly Rs. 25,400) into the hands of every class member interested in being compensated,” calling it “a major win for consumers in the hotly contested area of digital privacy.”
Facebook had created and stored a face template for nearly 1.4 million Illinois users after June 7, 2011. as per the court records. The social networking giant however had placed a condition that to qualify for using the template, an FB uder had to should have lived in the state for at least six months over the past nine years.
Now in a separate statement, Facebook headquartered in the San Francisco Bay Area said, "We are pleased to have reached a settlement so we can move past the issue, which is in the best interest of our shareholders and users."