Auditor Yost to Hold Cyber Fraud Prevention Training in Licking County

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Columbus – A cybersecurity expert from Auditor of State Dave Yost’s office will lead a free training seminar in Licking County to help law enforcement and local government officials combat the growing threat of cyberattacks on local government. 

The training, being held Thursday, June 28, is presented by Nicole Beckwith, an investigator and digital forensic examiner for the Auditor of State. Beckwith is a recognized expert on cybersecurity, policy, cyberterrorism and is trained in computer forensics, network investigations and network intrusion response.

The training will be held as follows:

Licking County Cybersecurity Training
Ohio Department of Agriculture
8995 East Main St., Floor 3
Reynoldsburg, OH 43068

Two sessions will be held: One session is tailored for law enforcement, while the other is for all government officials. More information can be found here

“Hackers are becoming more and more sophisticated and are looking for data-rich targets,” Auditor Yost said. “Governments by the very nature of what they do have a great deal of information that these cybercriminals are after. We need to do all we can to help local leaders in Licking County strengthen their governments to protect data and the interests of the public they serve.”

“We have the ability to help local leaders prevent personal information from getting into the hands of wrongdoers, and that’s why we’re doing this training,” said Auditor Yost.

More training sessions are being held across Ohio so that they are accessible to those who wish to attend. Auditor Yost partnered with local sheriffs to host the events. Morning sessions are limited to law enforcement officials, and afternoon sessions are designed for local government officials.

The training, which includes interactive live attacks and demonstrations, will help local officials understand how and why governments and computers are attacked, how to minimize their risk, how to identify digital threats, what to do if they are attacked, and how bitcoin works. 

Beginning in the summer of 2016, when cyberattacks against local governments were on the rise, Auditor Yost encouraged local government leaders to protect themselves and create contingencies. His call for action came after a number of local governments were defrauded of money, had to pay a ransom to regain control of their data, or thwarted an attempted attack. 


The Auditor of State’s office, one of five independently elected statewide offices in Ohio, is responsible for auditing more than 5,900 state and local government agencies.  Under the direction of Auditor Dave Yost, the office also provides financial services to local governments, investigates and prevents fraud in public agencies and promotes transparency in government.

Beth Gianforcaro
Press Secretary