The Security Camera Laws in Illinois: Everything You Need to Know

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Illinois – known for its great food, beautiful scenery, and wonderful people – has a few laws that govern the use of security cameras within the state. The following is everything you need to know about security camera laws in Illinois.

What are the Security Camera Laws in Illinois?

The security camera laws in Illinois are quite simple. To legally install and use a security camera, the following conditions must be met:

1. You must have the consent of any person or persons who will be recorded by the camera.

2. The security camera cannot record audio unless all parties involved have given consent (two-party consent)

3. The security camera must be clearly visible to anyone who is recorded.

4. Any footage taken must only be used for security and cannot be released to any other party without permission from all involved.

security camera laws in Illinois

Two-Party Consent Law in Illinois

When recording audio, Illinois has always been a two-party consent state. This means that it is illegal to record a conversation or other audio without the consent of all parties involved, Illinois 720 Ill. Compiled Stat. 5/14-2(a)(1)

In 2014, the Illinois Supreme Court found the current Eavesdropping Law to be unconstitutional as it only permitted recordings with all parties consenting. The newly amended law allowed recording conversations in areas where there is no reasonable expectation of privacy.

A key factor to consider when making legal audio recordings is whether you are doing so openly or secretly. You can make audio and video recordings of others in public without their knowledge by being transparent about your intentions, i.e., stating that you’re recording them or alerting them through obvious signs that they are on camera.

Security Camera-Specific Laws in Illinois

In Illinois, it is illegal to point a security camera toward your neighbor’s house for the purpose of recording activity inside their residence. Additionally, security cameras pointed at a neighbor’s property must be in plain view, to ensure that all individuals being recorded are aware of the camera. Illinois 720 Ill. Compiled Stat. 5/26‐4(a)‐(a‐6)

It’s illegal to place any recording devices in a restroom, tanning bed/salon, locker room/changing room, hotel bedroom, or residential unit without the knowledge and consent of the person being recorded. Illinois 720 Ill. Compiled Stat. 5/26‐4(a-15)(a-20)

Not only is it immoral, but it is also illegal to intentionally record or transmit video footage through someone’s clothing without their permission. Illinois 720 Ill. Compiled Stat. 5/26‐4(a-10).

security camera laws in Illinois

Penalties for Breaking the Security Camera Laws in Illinois

Illinois has strict eavesdropping laws in place, and any violations are considered a felony. For first-time offenders, the law imposes Class 4 felon status with consequences of 1-3 years imprisonment, probation, and fines of up to $25,000.

Second or subsequent offenses bump it up to a Class 3 felony carrying harsher punishments such as 2-5 years behind bars along with other penalties like probation plus the same amount in fines.

Illegally circulating or permitting the transmission of videos and live streams captured in breach of Illinois video recording laws is also a Class 3 felony and carries an incarceration period ranging from 2 to 5 years, probation, and fines up to $25,000.

install bullet security camera

Can I Install a Security Camera in My Illinois Home?

Installing a security camera in your own home is legal as long you are not using the footage for any illegal activity and respect the privacy of others. However, before setting up your CCTV system make sure to check if it abides by the two-party consent rule when recording audio and be aware of what your neighbors can potentially hear or see with its installation.

Aside from that, if you live in an apartment complex, condominium unit or HOA be certain to review pertinent documents like lease agreements and community rules beforehand so there won’t ever be issues later on about legality.

Can I Install a Security Camera in My Illinois Business?

Certainly, installing a security camera for your business in Illinois is acceptable under the law as long as it serves a legal purpose. When setting up a surveillance system, make sure your cameras are visible to customers and post signage to alert them of their presence. Moreover, guarantee that none of the recordings encompass any places away from your store or areas where consumers could anticipate privacy like bathrooms or fitting rooms.

In Illinois, businesses can legally mount video surveillance systems for increased safety and productivity. Not only do these cameras help identify any possible illegal activity, but they also aid in streamlining the workplace atmosphere. Installing a monitoring system is an invaluable security measure that every business should consider to protect their assets.

With these measures taken into account, you can rest assured that you are within legal limits while safeguarding your establishment!

How to File a Complaint if Someone is Violating the Security Camera Laws in Illinois

If you feel like your rights are being infringed on, it is best to contact a local attorney that specializes in privacy protection. An expert can provide you with the best advice pertaining to your specific case and help you take the necessary steps in filing a complaint.

You can also reach out to the Illinois Attorney General’s Office via their website or by calling 800-252-8011. Their Consumer Fraud Hotline is available for those affected by possible fraud or scams.

Local law enforcement can also be contacted for any issues regarding the security camera laws in Illinois. They can help verify if a certain recording is indeed illegal and provide solutions to resolve it.

When filing a complaint, be sure to include all of the relevant information:

-The name and address of the person you believe is violating the law

-The date(s) and time(s) of the incident

-The location where the incident occurred

-A description of what happened

-Any evidence you have, such as photos or videos

-The names of any witnesses

-Any other relevant information

Knowing Your Rights: How to Tell if Your Security Camera is Legal in Illinois

Apart from consulting an expert, you can be certain that your surveillance system is legal in Illinois by monitoring the following regulations:

1. Do not record or take pictures inside a restroom, changing room, or any other private area of a business.

2. Respect the privacy of your customers and employees by not recording their conversations without permission.

3. Place warning signs around the premises that visible cameras are in use.

4. Do not record video or audio from other establishments or private properties, as these are offenses under the law.

5. Abide by local government laws that may have stricter regulations on security camera usage.


Knowing the security camera laws in Illinois is an important part of respecting each other’s privacy and making sure that everyone feels safe and secure. By following these guidelines, you can be certain that your security camera system is compliant with Illinois law. Remember to always consult a lawyer if you are unsure and always respect the privacy of others.

Security Camera Laws in Other States

The Security Camera Laws in Idaho

The Security Camera Laws in Hawaii

The Security Camera Laws in Georgia


Can security cameras record audio in Illinois?

No, recording audio without the express permission of those being recorded is illegal in Illinois and can carry hefty penalties. Illinois is a two-party consent state, meaning that all parties being recorded must give explicit permission for the audio to be recorded.

Do I need a license to install security cameras in Illinois?

In the state of Illinois, any business that offers video surveillance, access control, or burglar alarm systems installation must obtain a Private Alarm Contractor Agency license. This includes security cameras, so it is important to check with your local licensing board to ensure that you comply with the law. That being said, private persons installing security cameras in their own residences do not need a license to do so.

Can I install a security camera in my Illinois home?

Yes, homeowners are allowed to install security cameras in their homes. However, all the laws mentioned above still apply and must be followed if you wish to avoid any penalties. Additionally, certain local government laws may have stricter regulations on security camera usage within residential properties. It’s always a good idea to check with your local government to ensure that you are following all applicable laws.

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