X to collect biometrics of premium users for “safety, security and identification purposes”

X, the erstwhile Twitter, is now set to collect even more sensitive user data than it already was. The social networking platform updated its privacy policy, which will now entitle it to collect biometric data and other personal information of users. The change goes into effect from September 29, and biometrics are for users who have subscribed to the platform’s subscription service – X Premium, which was earlier known as Twitter Blue.

According to a report by Bloomberg on the matter, X “may collect and use your biometric information for safety, security and identification purposes” as long as the user provides consent to it. And if this is not enough, the erstwhile Twitter will be able to access the job histories and educational backgrounds of users as well. A representative from X confirmed the updated privacy policy. Users who are concerned about the new privacy policy have a few options. They can choose not to provide their biometric data or their job and education history. They can also delete their X account and hop on to alternative platforms, like Meta’s Threads.

This development, rightfully, raises a number of privacy concerns. Biometric data is considered to be a critically sensitive piece of personal information, and it can be used to identify people uniquely. This makes it a valuable target for cyber-criminals, who could use it to commit identity theft or other crimes. To collect biometric data, X will require premium users to provide their government-issued ID and a selfie. It is also interesting to note that X now aims to collect the biometric data of users, since it was the same thing that embroiled the social media platform in a proposed class action suit earlier this year. For those who need a refresher, the suit was filed on July 11 and alleged that the erstwhile Twitter wrongfully captured, stored and used Illinois residents’ biometric data without obtaining the consent of the users, or informed that that it collects and stores their biometric identifiers.

This data will be used to create a unique identifier for each user, and are for matching purposes, according to X. “This will additionally help us tie, for those that choose, an account to a real person by processing their government issued ID,” X said in a statement. “This will also help X fight impersonation attempts and make the platform more secure.”

Furthermore, X will also collect information about users’ jobs and education histories. This information will be collected from users’ profiles and from third-party source. This is a development that comes soon X announced its intentions to take on LinkedIn and allowed verified companies to post job listings directly on their profiles. “We may collect and use your personal information (such as your employment history, educational history, employment preferences, skills and abilities, job search activity and engagement, and so on) to recommend potential jobs for you, to share with potential employers when you apply for a job, to enable employers to find potential candidates, and to show you more relevant advertising,” X said.

Originally posted 2023-09-01 04:52:24.