Image Description

Library Records Confidentiality Policy

The Decatur Public Library seeks to protect the privacy of its patrons while responding to legitimate law enforcement and national security concerns.

In compliance with federal and state law, the library will preserve the confidentiality of information sought or received, Internet usage and materials consulted, borrowed, or acquired, by library users. These materials may include database search records, circulation records, interlibrary loan records and other personally identifiable uses of library materials, facilities, programs or services, such as reference interviews.

75 ILCS 70/) Library Records Confidentiality Act

(75 ILCS 70/1) (from Ch. 81, par. 1201)
Sec. 1. (a) The registration and circulation records of a library are confidential information. No person shall publish or make any information contained in such records available to the public unless:

(1) required to do so under a court order; or

(2) the information is requested by a sworn law enforcement officer who represents that it is impractical to secure a court order as a result of an emergency where the law enforcement officer has probable cause to believe that there is an imminent danger of physical harm. The information requested must be limited to identifying a suspect, witness, or victim of a crime. The information requested without a court order may not include the disclosure of registration or circulation records that would indicate materials borrowed, resources reviewed, or services used at the library. If requested to do so by the library, the requesting law enforcement officer must sign a form acknowledging the receipt of the information. A library providing the information may seek subsequent judicial review to assess compliance with this Section. This subsection shall not alter any right to challenge the use or dissemination of patron information that is otherwise permitted by law.

(b) This Section does not prevent a library from publishing or making available to the public reasonable statistical reports regarding library registration and book circulation where those reports are presented so that no individual is identified therein.
(b-5) Nothing in this Section shall be construed as a privacy violation or a breach of confidentiality if a library provides information to a law enforcement officer under item (2) of subsection (a).
(c) For the purpose of this Section, (i) "library" means any public library or library of an educational, historical or eleemosynary institution, organization or society; (ii) "registration records" includes any information a library requires a person to provide in order for that person to become eligible to borrow books and other materials and (iii) "circulation records" includes all information identifying the individual borrowing particular books or materials.

(Source: P.A. 95-40, eff. 1-1-08.)

Adopted by the Board of Trustees August 21, 2014. Reviewed May 17, 2018. Reviewed February 18, 2021.