X, the Former Twitter, Expands Data Collection in Privacy Policy Update

X, the Former Twitter, Expands Data Collection in Privacy Policy Update

In a significant policy shift, X has announced its intention to collect biometric data from its users as part of an update to its privacy policy. This newly proposed data collection encompasses various forms of personal information, including facial photographs and, intriguingly, employment and educational histories.

Under this policy update, subscribers to X’s premium service, X Premium, will have the option to voluntarily provide a selfie and a photo ID for verification purposes. Additionally, X may collect employment and educational history details from its users, with the declared intention of recommending potential job opportunities and facilitating the job application process.

While this marks a substantial expansion of X’s data collection practices, it also raises questions about the platform’s future plans. Speculation has arisen that X may be positioning itself to enter the recruitment services industry. This hypothesis gains credence from X Corp’s acquisition of Laskie, a tech recruiting service, earlier this year. This move represented X Corp’s first acquisition following Elon Musk’s purchase of Twitter (as it was then known) for a staggering $44 billion in the previous year.

The updated privacy policy is scheduled to take effect on September 29th. It explicitly states the rationale behind the expanded data collection: “We may collect and use your personal information (such as your employment history, educational history, employment preferences, skills and abilities, job search activity and engagement, and so on) to recommend potential jobs for you, to share with potential employers when you apply for a job, to enable employers to find potential candidates, and to show you more relevant advertising.”

It’s important to note that X has clarified that the collection of biometric data will primarily apply to X Premium users. According to the company, users will be given the option to provide their government ID, along with a selfie, to enhance the verification process. Biometric data may be extracted from both the government-issued ID and the selfie image for matching purposes. This multifaceted verification process is envisioned to enhance security on the platform by linking user accounts to real individuals and thereby mitigating impersonation attempts.

Elon Musk, the influential figure behind X, has also reaffirmed the platform’s plans to introduce video and audio call functionalities. Notably, these features are expected to be accessible across various operating systems, including iOS, Android, Mac, and PC. A notable distinction is that phone numbers will not be a requisite for utilizing these features.

Mr. Musk envisions X as an “effective global address book,” signifying the platform’s ambitions to serve as an all-encompassing app, providing a wide array of services within a single interface. As part of this grand vision, users can anticipate additional features and, consequently, further updates to the privacy policy to accommodate these innovations. However, the precise rollout date for the new calling feature remains undisclosed at this time.

In sum, X’s privacy policy update signifies a substantial expansion of its data collection practices, with implications for both user privacy and the platform’s future direction. As X continues its transformation into an “everything app,” users can anticipate further enhancements and refinements, accompanied by ongoing adjustments to the privacy policy.

Published byNick Betancourt
Nick Betancourt has been a leader in the public relations and communications industry for nearly two decades. With a background in journalism and a strong network of global luxury brands, he has seen firsthand the changes that have taken place in the PR space over the years.
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