Putting a Finger on Biometrics Law


  • Amanda Heine


Americans nationwide are walking into their place of employment Monday through Friday and either placing their finger on a scanner, having their face analyzed by a beam or even the iris of their eye digitally scanned by a laser. The process of clocking in for work with your fingerprint has become extremely jejune. This process is more often than not required by employers before an employee can start their work day. Whether biometrics is used for logging in hours, authentication, or security purposes it is typically a ‘use it or lose it’ for the job scenario. Though biometrics might be making the workplace increasingly more efficient and innovative with this also comes new risks. Employers are especially at risk with potential liability encompassed within privacy law and how this data is obtained and stored. The employers require their employees to submit to the use of biometrics, yet there are minimal to zero required obligations to the employee by the employer. There are currently no federal regulations put in place for the protection of employee privacy rights relative to biometrics.