But there are impediments, said Ward, of the state IT officials' group. "Sometimes, states will say, 'We don't have jurisdiction to help local governments. That's not our swim lane,'" she said. "Or localities will say, 'We're good, and we don't need your help.'"
And Ward said some states say they don't have the money to help local governments with cybersecurity. "They'll say, 'We're just trying to keep our head above water ourselves.'"
The report recommended that states overcome those obstacles by building relationships with municipal leagues and county associations and raising awareness by holding cyber summits. States also should explore ways to save money by consulting local governments during the cyber contract planning process.
"You don't need to have jurisdictional permission nor money to pick up the phone and call someone and build a relationship," Ward said. "That's something anyone can do." ___ Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.