Privacy questions at USO & IOA

Universal Orlando: Is personal security an issue with all of the data collected by Universal Orlando? Can your fingerprint be matched back to your personal information from your hotel stay?

From C Schmuck
Posted October 11, 2013 at 7:49 PM
I recently stayed on-site (again - wouldn't do USO/IOA without fastpass) and purchased a multi-day park-to-park pass. After getting my tickets in the hotel lobby and doing my initial entry into the park, I began to wonder about personal information security.

In order to enter the park, you have to provide your fingerprint. This then is matched to your park pass, which could easily be matched to your hotel reservation, which contains a vast amount of personal information - name, address, phone, email, credit card(s), etc.

Does anyone know how long USO/IOA stores this data? Having all of this information available, including my fingerprint, is a bit unnerving.


From Anthony Murphy
Posted October 14, 2013 at 5:22 PM
I think they are making sure that you are using a ticket that you purchased.

From C Schmuck
Posted October 27, 2013 at 10:02 AM
I understand WHY they are using the fingerprint, but I'm wondering where and how long they keep this information. Could a hacker connect the dots and have everything from credit card to fingerprint???

From Brian Emery
Posted October 28, 2013 at 7:31 AM
Wow someone is worried about their privacy or looking for an alibi for something?

Universal takes a fingerprint so you can’t buy a ticket for 1 week, leave the park after 2 days, then give or sell your remaining days on your ticket. They used to give you a full week pass with a two day purchase. So this makes sense to me to protect against losing monies.

There are many ways to track you in a Theme Park unless you pay cash for everything.

If you are so concerned and paranoid about being tracked, pay cash at the window the day of the park visit (Cost more), stay at an offsite hotel under a fake name, Visit Wiki Leaks often.

And keep looking over your left shoulder…… Boogie man is coming… Not your right shoulder, but your left shoulder. They track those who look over their right shoulder too often.. But you did not hear it from me.

Or you could just call Universals and ask them about their policy….

From Russell Meyer
Posted October 28, 2013 at 8:22 AM
Disney collects and maintains the same biometric information, except that information, theoretically, has to be stored forever, since the resort sells non-expiring passes.

If you're really worried about your identity being stolen by a theme park or by hackers accessing theme park computers, then you should go find a nice cabin in the woods, hide your money under your mattress, get yourself a HAM radio, and hide under your kitchen table.

From Rob Pastor
Posted October 28, 2013 at 10:53 AM
Brian: That was hilarious. I'm still laughing.

From Brian Emery
Posted October 28, 2013 at 11:42 AM

Thank you Rob, I was trying to have fun and not be too sarcastic...

OOps hurry and get off my computer, they are Watching....

Breaker ONE NINE
Breaker ONE NINE
You got you ears on...

From Tony Duda
Posted October 28, 2013 at 9:38 PM
I just thought it was strange that Schmuck worried about Universal getting a small amount of personal data about you in their system for a short stay while not talking about the vast collection of data that Disney company is amassing on everyone and keeping it for decades or longer. Disney may be the more troubling actor in this type of endeavor.

From Anthony Murphy
Posted November 1, 2013 at 4:43 PM
I don't think Universal is the place to be worried about your privacy. How about Amazon, Gmail, Google Generally, etc.

From Tracy Bates
Posted November 19, 2013 at 5:53 AM
I know this topic is kind of stale, but I thought I might give some info to try to be helpful.

It's unlikely that universal is actually keeping a copy of your fingerprint. More than likely, it's making a record of the characteristics of your fingerprints and comparing those. Think of it as a detailed physical description. Your finger has so many ridges, so many whorls, so many loops, and so many arches. Their goal isn't to positively ID you beyond a shadow of a doubt, it's just to keep you from selling your pass to someone else, so they could have it do a quick check against the records to see if the person coming into the park has the same number of arches, ridges and whorls. Not perfect, but it doesn't have to be since that would stop the vast majority of people from gaming the system, which is their goal.

that being said, you aren't going to get an answer from them if you call. first off, the person answering the phone isn't going to know the answer, second, they aren't going to tell anyone what they are checking otherwise someone would make a website that matches up people wanting to sell their tickets with people who have the matching characteristics.

If you've ever seen it, Busch Gardens used to use a system that you put your index and middle finger on the scanner and it measured the lengths of those two fingers and used that to determine if you were the same person. (They were trying to avoid people being spooked about using fingerprints.) They got rid of it after a year or so because other parks were using fingerprints without causing complaints and because it didn't work well for kids. If they have a two year pass, their fingers could grow from the time they got it before it expired. The system did work well for adults other than people couldn't always figure out how to put their hand in the scanner.

Hope this helps...

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