X to start collecting biometric, employment data

Ahead of the upcoming changes With X’s privacy policy, set tot take place on Sept 29, questions loom large over how premium users’ sensitive biometric data will be protected by a company that’s had its fair share of public issues lately. While certainly a plus for security and KYC in theory, that’s assuming the social media giant can keep the biometric, employment and education data they collect out of criminals’ hands.

Rob Otto, EMEA CTO of Ping Identity, commented:

“Allowing premium users to add biometric verification to their accounts is a positive step for security, and seeing this rolled out could help address the spread of bots. That said, questions remain over how they plan to protect this biometric data once it is handed over by users.

“This highlights a complex balance that many are still trying to strike: how can users be kept safe, made to feel safe, and not burdened with inconvenient security protocols? Biometric identification is incredibly effective in many applications – it’s much easier to steal a password than somebody’s face, after all – but if the image shared is compromised, that opens up a whole new range of threats.

“The same goes for career histories. X may have plans to build a LinkedIn rival and use this information for targeted job suggestions, but that’s assuming people trust the platform enough to share. A decentralised approach that empowers users with their own data would ensure individuals aren’t put at risk if a particular platform comes under attack, but until then, users will likely remain hesitant about sharing more information than is necessary.”

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