Home improvement stores like Home Depot and Lowe’s have become partners in Big Brother’s ever expanding public surveillance program.
Home Depot’s “You Can Do It. We Can Help” slogan should really say, “We Can Do It. We Can Help Big Brother.” And Lowe’s “Do It Right For Less. Start At Lowe’s” slogan should say, “Doing It Right And Identifying Every Customer, Starts At Lowe’s.”
According to the Cook County Record, two recent class action lawsuits accuse Home Depot and Lowe’s of secretly using facial recognition to identify customers as soon as they enter their stores.
On Sept. 4, 2019, a group of plaintiffs simultaneously filed virtually identical class action complaints in Cook County Circuit Court in Chicago against Lowe’s and in federal court in Atlanta against Home Depot, accusing the retailers of violating the Illinois state law by “surreptitiously” scanning customers’ faces as they moved about the chains’ stores.
According to the Lowe’s lawsuit, home improvement stores are secretly using facial recognition to identify everyone.
“Lowe’s has augmented its in-store security cameras with software that tracks individuals’ movements throughout the store using a unique scan of face geometry. Put simply, Defendants surreptitiously attempt to collect the faceprint of every person who appears in front of one of their facial-recognition cameras.” (To find out more about Home Depot tracking customers, click here.)
The Home Depot and the Lowe’s cases claim that they have failed to inform customers that their biometric data is being collected, and did not obtain written consent for doing so. Home Depot and Lowe’s have also neglected to post a publicly available retention schedule detailing when the data will be destroyed.
According to the Lowe’s class action, “defendants actively conceal their faceprinting practices from the public.”
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