Meta boss Mark Zuckerberg will be deposed as part of a Texas lawsuit accusing the Facebook and Instagram parent of using facial recognition technology without customer consent.
A Texas state appeals court upheld a lower court’s decision requiring Zuckerberg to give testimony in the case.
The lawsuit, originally filed in 2022, accused Meta of “secretly harvesting” biometric data from its users in violation of state law.
The decision was a blow to Meta, which had sought to avoid having its boss deposed. Meanwhile, Texas argued Zuckerberg should be compelled to sit because he has “unique personal knowledge of discoverable information relevant to its claims,” the filing said.
Meta did not immediately return a request for comment on the court ruling.
Bloomberg was first to report on the decision.
The Texas lawsuit alleged that Meta gleaned the biometric data from photos and videos uploaded by users, shared the information with others and then “failed to destroy collected identifiers within a reasonable time.”
Texas is said to be seeking hundreds of billions of dollars in civil penalties – with fines of up to $25,000 for every violation of applicable state laws.
Meta has described the suit as “without merit.”
When the lawsuit was filed in February 2022, Texas Attorney General Ken Patton accused the company of attempting to “take advantage of people and their children with the intent to turn a profit at the expense of one’s safety and well-being.”
In November 2021, the Facebook parent said it would shut down its facial recognition program and proceeded to delete related data for more than a billion users.
With Post wires