According to a complaint filed in federal district court in Chicago, Examity violated the Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA) by illegally storing and using a student’s biometric identifiers and information. Last week’s filing explained that Examity is a company that “develops, owns, and operates an eponymous online proctoring software that collects biometric information.” When the plaintiff, a college student, used the exam software, Examity reportedly collected his biometrics, including his eye movements and facial expressions.
The filing took issue with the company’s alleged failure to provide statutorily required data retention and destruction policies. It also explained that Examity “failed to provide Plaintiff the specific purpose and length of term for which a biometric identifier or biometric information was being collected, stored, and used.” The plaintiff claimed that he can only conclude, based on Examity’s silence in this regard, that the company has not and will not destroy his biometric data when the initial purpose for collecting or obtaining the data has been satisfied.
The plaintiff seeks to certify a class of Illinois residents who used Examity any time since March 2020 to take an exam online and had their facial geometry collected. He also seeks to certify a parallel subclass consisting of Western Governors University students. For the alleged violation of their rights, the plaintiff and other putative class members request statutory damages and injunctive relief.
Last month, three students sued another online proctoring service, UProctor, for alleged BIPA violations following a data breach that the company experienced. Those University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign students are represented by the same counsel as the Western Governors University student litigating this case, Wolf Haldenstein Adler Freeman & Herz LLP and Bursor & Fisher P.A.