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Security Awareness Materials

Protect Yourself Against Cyberattacks

20 ILCS 1375/ Illinois Information Security Improvement Act. ( was updated recently and went into effect on January 1st, 2023. This update includes Sec. 5-30 which states:

Local government employee cybersecurity training. Every employee of a county or municipality shall annually complete a cybersecurity training program. The training shall include, but need not be limited to, detecting phishing scams, preventing spyware infections and identity theft, and preventing and responding to data breaches. The Department shall make available to each county and municipality a training program for employees that complies with the content requirements of this Section. A county or municipality may create its own cybersecurity training program.

The Illinois Department of Innovation & Technology is not in charge of compliance for this act. Please check with your organization’s own legal counsel to interpret what this means for your organization.

As part of the SLCGP program, the state is planning to add additional resources to the Resources page. Please feel free to take any resource or any information from this website to use in any manner your organization needs. Add your own branding if so desired.

Protect Yourself Against Cyberattacks

You can avoid cyber risks by taking steps in advance:

  • Limit the personal information you share online. Change privacy settings and do not use location features.
  • Keep software applications and operating systems up-to-date.
  • Create strong passwords by using upper and lower case letters, numbers and special characters. Use a password manager and two methods of verification.
  • Watch for suspicious activity that asks you to do something right away, offers something that sounds too good to be true, or needs your personal information. Think before you click. When in doubt, do NOT click.
  • Protect your home and/or business using a secure Internet connection and Wi-Fi network, and change passwords regularly.
  • Don’t share PINs or passwords. Use devices that use biometric scans when possible (e.g. fingerprint scanner or facial recognition).
  • Check your account statements and credit reports regularly.
  • Be cautious about sharing personal financial information, such as your bank account number, Social Security number or credit card number. Only share personal information on secure sites that begin with https://. Do not use sites with invalid certificates. Use a Virtual Private Network (VPN) that creates a more secure connection.
  • Use antivirus and anti-malware solutions, and firewalls to block threats.
  • Back up your files regularly in an encrypted file or encrypted file storage device.
  • Do not click on links in texts or emails from people you don’t know. Scammers can create fake links to websites.
  • Remember that the government will not call, text or contact you via social media about owing money.
  • Keep in mind that scammers may try to take advantage of financial fears by calling with work-from-home-opportunities, debt consolidation offers and student loan repayment plans.