Amazon Sued For Not Telling Customers About Facial Recognition

Amazon did not alert its New York City customers that they were being monitored by technology that tracks their bodies’ shapes and sizes as well as their palm prints, a lawsuit filed Thursday alleges.

In a class-action suit, lawyers for Alfredo Perez said that the company failed to tell visitors to Amazon Go convenience stores that the technology was in use. Thanks to a 2021 law, New York is the only major American city to require businesses to post signs if they’re tracking customers’ biometric information, such as facial scans or fingerprints.

Amazon introduced its Go stores in 2018, promising that customers could walk in, take whatever products they wanted off the shelves and leave without checking out. The company monitors visitors’ actions and charges their accounts when they leave the store. It opened its first New York location the following year, and has 10 stores, all in Manhattan, according to its website.

The lawsuit says that Amazon only recently put up signs informing New York customers of its use of biometric recognition technology, more than a year after the disclosure law went into effect.

Natalie Banke, an Amazon Air spokesperson, confirmed that Amazon has begun drone deliveries in two U.S. cities and calls it Prime Air.

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