Snapchat Settles Illinois Claim: What it Means for Privacy Rights

Attention all Snapchat users! Have you heard the news? The social media giant has recently settled a lawsuit in Illinois revolving around privacy rights. This settlement could have major implications for not only Snapchat but also other tech companies operating in the state. In this blog post, we will dive into what exactly happened and what it means for your personal data on social media platforms. So, grab your phone and let’s get started!

Introduction to Snapchat and Illinois Claim

Illinois residents may have noticed a new Snapchat filter this week. The filter, which appeared on the app on Tuesday, allows users to “add” themselves to an existing photo or video. The addition of the Illinois filter follows Snapchat’s settlement of a claim filed by the state’s Attorney General.

The claim alleged that Snapchat violated Illinois’ Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA) when it collected and stored biometric data without user consent. Under the terms of the settlement, Snapchat will pay $150,000 to the Illinois attorney general’s office and delete all biometric data it collected from Illinois residents.

Snapchat is just one of many companies that have been accused of violating BIPA in recent years. In 2017, Facebook settled a similar claim for $550 million. And earlier this year, Google agreed to pay $7 million to settle allegations that it violated BIPA when it collected facial recognition data from its users.

While the settlements in these cases are significant, they pale in comparison to the potential liabilities companies face under BIPA. A class action lawsuit against Facebook seeking $1 billion in damages is currently making its way through the courts. And last month, a federal judge ruled that Google could be on the hook for up to $20 billion in damages in a separate BIPA case.

The settlements in these cases underscore the importance of compliance with BIPA. Companies that collect biometric data from Illinois residents must obtain prior written consent

Impact of the Snapchat Settlement on Privacy Rights

The Snapchat settlement is a victory for privacy rights. The social media platform has agreed to pay $8.5 million to the state of Illinois after being accused of violating the Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA). This settlement is significant because it is the first time a company has been held accountable for violating BIPA, which protects people’s biometric information, such as fingerprints and faceprints.

This settlement should send a strong message to other companies that they must take data privacy seriously and respect people’s right to control their own information. It is also a reminder that state laws like BIPA are powerful tools for protecting consumers’ privacy rights.

Differences between Snapchat’s Old and New Policies

Snapchat’s new policies, which go into effect on March 1, 2020, include a number of changes that will impact users’ privacy rights. Here are some key differences between the old and new policies:

  • Under the old policy, Snapchat collected user data for marketing purposes without consent. Under the new policy, Snapchat will only collect user data for marketing purposes with explicit consent.
  • Under the old policy, Snapchat shared user data with third-party advertisers without consent. Under the new policy, Snapchat will only share user data with third-party advertisers with explicit consent.
  • Under the old policy, Snapchat allowed third-party advertisers to use tracking cookies to collect user data. Under the new policy, Snapchat will no longer allow third-party advertisers to use tracking cookies to collect user data.
  • Under the old policy, Snapchat did not disclose how long it retained user data. Under the new policy, Snapchat will delete user data within 30 days of a user deleting their account.

Changes to User Data Collection Practices

Snapchat has come under fire in the past for its user data collection practices. The social media platform has been accused of collecting and storing users’ personal information without their consent. In response to these allegations, Snapchat has made some changes to its user data collection practices.

Now, when a user downloads the Snapchat app, they will be presented with a screen that asks them to allow or deny access to their camera roll and contacts. If a user denies access to their camera roll, they will still be able to use the app, but they will not be able to send or receive snaps from other users. This change is designed to give users more control over their personal data.

In addition, Snapchat will no longer collect and store certain types of user data, such as location data. This change is intended to protect users’ privacy rights.

These changes to Snapchat’s user data collection practices are a positive step forward for privacy rights. However, it is important for users to be aware that even if they do not allow access to their camera roll or contacts, Snapchat can still collect and store other types of personal data, such as their phone number or email address.

Potential Implications of Recent Changes

In recent years, Snapchat has changed the way it handles user data several times, most notably in its handling of user location data. These changes have led to some concerns about the potential implications for users’ privacy rights.

One potential implication of these changes is that Snapchat may be collecting more user data than it needs to. This could lead to users’ personal information being mishandled or leaked, as has happened with other companies in the past. Another possibility is that Snapchat could use this data to target ads and content at users more effectively. While this might not be a bad thing in and of itself, it could lead to users feeling like they are being constantly tracked and monitored.

It is worth noting that Snapchat is not currently subject to many of the same privacy regulations as other companies. This means that it may be able to get away with things that would not be allowed if it were subject to stricter regulation. However, if the company faces enough public pressure, it is possible that regulators will step in and impose stricter rules on how Snapchat can collect and use user data.


The settlement of Illinois’ claim against Snapchat is a significant step forward in the fight for privacy rights and data protection. By enforcing its terms, Illinois has sent a powerful message to companies that they must take their obligations seriously when it comes to protecting the privacy of their users. As we move into an increasingly digital world, it’s more important than ever that companies prioritize user safety and security by implementing proper safeguards on their platforms. With this precedent set by Snapchat, we hope other social media networks will follow suit in protecting our personal information online.


Writer and contributor at dfives

Related Articles

Back to top button