On July 23, 2017, Washington State will become the third state (after Illinois and Texas) to statutorily restrict the collection, storage and use of biometric data for commercial purposes. The law focuses on “biometric identifiers,” which it defines as “data generated by automatic measurements of an individual’s biological characteristics, such as a fingerprint, voiceprint, eye retinas, irises, or other unique biological patterns or characteristics that is used to identify a specific individual.”

Notably for our readers, the law excludes all photos, video or audio recordings, or information “collected, used, or stored for health care treatment, payment or operations” subject to HIPAA from the definition of “biometric identifiers.”

We invite you to read Fox partner Gavin Skok’s extensive discussion of the new law and how it handles businesses’ collection, storage and use of biometric identifiers.

We are proud to report that, as part of Fox Rothschild’s ongoing commitment to protecting the confidential and personal information of clients and employees, the firm has named Partner Elizabeth G. Litten as its first HIPAA Privacy Officer.  Elizabeth is one of the most prolific and incisive contributors to this blog and will continue her practice as a Partner in the firm’s Corporate Department.

This appointment follows on the heels of the firm’s naming of Mark McCreary, Esq., another Partner of Fox Rothschild, as its Chief Privacy Officer. Both positions complement the firm’s robust data privacy and health law practices and further the firm’s mission to protect sensitive data for clients and employees.

Bill Maruca, Esq. and I look forward to working with Elizabeth in her additional role at the firm.