Twitter/X To Start Collecting User Biometric and Employment Data
Photo and video professionals who still use the company formerly known as Twitter to promote their projects should beware.
The most relevant section specifically states, “Based on your consent, we may collect and use your biometric information for safety, security, and identification purposes,”
The policy clause is for now fortunately optional for users and Twitter hasn’t clarified exactly what sorts of biometrics it might seek.
They could however include the obvious like facial biometrics from user selfies, but they might also revolve around acquiring iris patterns or even fingerprints.
Some of the above biometric data points could possibly be used by X Corp (as it’s now called under Elon Musk’s ownership) to enable passwordless sign-ins through phones and other devices.
As one app developer, Steve Moser, noted, X is indeed planning on building a support infrastructure for passkeys, which could be joined to a user’s biometric data through their phone or, more prosaically, to a PIN number.
X states that it may collect and store, “your employment history, educational history, employment preferences, skills and abilities, job search activity and engagement.”
These collection requests will presumably also be voluntary, at least for now. It’s also worth noting that they’re possibly being implemented for the sake of a suspected job search platform that Elon Musk has visibly played at adding to X.
Unlock early access to the X Hiring Beta — exclusively for Verified Organizations.
Feature your most critical roles and organically reach millions of relevant candidates.
— Hiring (@XHiring) August 25, 2023
Another possible reason for the pending rollout of the biometric collection could be X/Twitter’s recent problems with blue tick fraud. The company introduced this feature earlier in 2023 for a monthly $8 fee or an annual $84 option to give paying accounts status as more trustworthy premium members.
However the only ID requirement is a fairly simple phone number verification and as expected, cybercriminals quickly started taking advantage of the feature for phishing and impersonation scams.
If X is introducing optional biometric data collection for the sake of avoiding fraud, the request may not remain optional for long.
If you’re a photographer, videographer, or artist who has an X account, the upcoming “privacy” clauses above are worth keeping in mind if you value your genuine privacy.
They’re going to be optional for now, apparently, but who knows what happens later.