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Hastings bill protects student information (VIDEO)

hastings 0418 prefSPRINGFIELD – Computer hacking is a growing societal threat, and the perpetrators are willing to cross any lines – including into school databases.

That’s why State Senator Michael E. Hastings (D-Tinley Park) passed Senate Bill 3201 on Monday, giving parents added recourse to protect their children and their data.

The measure requires schools to notify the parent of a student within 48 hours after discovery of a breach of security that results in the unauthorized release, disclosure or acquisition of information from a student record.

Hastings advances measure to expand use of Amber Alerts

hastings 022218SPRINGFIELD – The state of Illinois currently has no procedure in place to alert police and emergency professionals of missing disabled persons, but State Senator Michael E. Hastings (D -Tinley Park) is working to change that.

Hastings’ measure is aimed at reporting, quickly locating and returning missing disabled persons to their homes. It is motivated by the story of Greg*, a disabled man who went to Chipotle in Matteson, Illinois for a group-home excursion. During the outing, Greg wandered away from his group and it quickly became apparent there were few procedures in place to help find him.

When his caretakers requested an Amber Alert be put out in order to locate Greg, the authorities said there was no system in place for individuals living with disabilities. After 21 excruciating hours, Greg was returned to his caretakers, and the incident left advocates wondering if more can be done to protect Illinois’ disabled populations.

“It’s clear we can do more here, so I have sponsored this commonsense legislation to put protocols in place to help find and protect individuals living with intellectual and physical disabilities,” Hastings said. “This small change will help immediately alert authorities and emergency networkers to bring our loved ones home sooner.”

Senate Bill 2265 changes the Missing Persons Identification Act to ensure "high-risk missing persons" includes persons living with a developmental or intellectual disability. This will cover these individuals under the Endangered Missing Person Advisory program, which would provide a regional system for the rapid dissemination of information of missing people.

“As a community-based provider that supports adults with intellectual disabilities, I am excited to learn the Human Service Committee passed SB2265,” said Mary Pat Ambrosino, Chief Executive Officer of CTF Illinois. “Adults with intellectual disabilities are a vulnerable population, and by including them in the LEAD system you are not only providing a proven resource to families and providers but also giving us peace of mind knowing the safety of those we support is a priority.”

Senate Bill 2265 passed the Senate’s Committee on Human Services with bipartisan support and now moves to the full Senate for consideration.

“I can’t help but think if this alert system had been in place, Greg may not have gone missing for 21 hours,” Hastings said. “We are taking the lessons of the past to give police departments the means to communicate quickly and effectively to disseminate missing persons reports.”


*The name Greg was used to protect the identify and safety of the individual who experienced this event.

Hastings pushes to stop Illinois’ participation in controversial Crosscheck program

hastings 021717SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Michael E. Hastings’ measure to halt the state’s participation in the controversial Interstate Voter Registration Data Crosscheck Program advanced today.

Senate Bill 2273, sponsored by Hastings (D-Tinley Park) would prohibit the state from sharing any voter information with any interstate voter registration program other than the Electronic Registration Information Center (ERIC).

Hastings, Chairman of the Illinois Senate’s Sub-Committee on Cybersecurity, has continued to investigate the 2016 State Board of Elections security breach.

Hastings pushes for strategy to fight foreign cyber threats

hastings 011017SPRINGFIELD- State Senator Michael E. Hastings (D-Tinley Park) is fighting to protect the citizens of Illinois from catastrophic cyber threats.

Hastings advanced House Joint Resolution 59 to create the International Cybersecurity Task Force to develop strategies to fight and protect Illinois’ voter information databases from foreign cyberattacks.

“Illinois businesses and residents rely on secure databases and internet services to function in a global world,” Hastings said. “Unsecure online services are detrimental to the well-being of citizens and puts businesses at a disadvantage. It’s our duty to take the proper precautions to fight cyber-attacks that are impeding our basic freedoms.”

Hastings supported this resolution in response to coordinated global cyberattack known as WannaCry, one of the largest cyberattacks ever recorded. The May 2017 attack impacted more than 150 countries, infecting more than 250,000 computers and devices.

There is an increasing concern that the Illinois power grid could be susceptible to widespread outage. This could cause catastrophic damage to the economy of Illinois, and Hastings said the state needs to actively seek ways to add layers of protection. 

“Cyberattacks have continuously become more severe. It’s important for Illinois to upgrade and institute safety precautions to protect key infrastructure,” Hastings said. “As online threats and entities continue to evolve, Illinois needs to be one step ahead to better serve the citizens and businesses of our great state.”

Hastings has continued to advocate and call for stronger cybersecurity protocols at the state and local levels to prevent further attacks on Illinois’ voter registration databases. He plans on taking action to protect Illinois’ cyber services to ensure there aren’t threats to local businesses.

“Our mom and pop businesses are the pillars of our communities. We cannot expect them to have the resources and technology to fight off expert foreign cyber-attacks,” Hastings said.

House Joint Resolution 59 passed the Senate’s State Government Committee with bipartisan support and now moves to the full senate for consideration.

Sen. Michael E. Hastings

hastings 150
19th Legislative District

Years served: 2012 - Present

Committee assignments: Appropriations I; Appropriations II; Financial Institutions; Insurance; Judiciary (Vice-Chairperson); State Government & Veterans Affairs; Committee of the Whole.

Biography: Born October 6th, 1980, in Orland Hills; B.S. in Leadership and Management, Civil Engineering from the United States Military Academy at West Point, M.S., Business Administration, University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign; former US Army Captain; Bronze Star recipient; former trustee and vice president for High School District 230.