IT security fundamentals

Members $125/Non-members $250

NTEN courses run for one week and are offered twice a year.

I can't wait to share this information across our network. I'm at a federated nonprofit with about 200 affiliates. Most of them are very small operations, and IT security is limited for them — this keeps me up at night!
Former course participant

Course Overview


Uncover potential IT security risks your organization may be facing.

Critical thinking

Identify common mistakes and bad practices within nonprofits.

Process management

Learn what practical procedure and process changes you can implement immediately.


If you’re storing and working with data about members, donors, volunteers, clients, donors, credit cards, and so forth, you are a potential target. You must have a robust IT security strategy. Information breaches and other hacks cost organizations significant amounts of money to resolve and damage supporter confidence.

Nonprofits of all sizes are often at greater risk. They typically lack IT and IT security knowledge, and tend to have fewer IT-related staffing resources. And, hackers can steal as much information from 10 small nonprofits as they can from one large business.

In this course, you’ll get a general overview of what IT security is and why it’s essential. You’ll then learn to identify some lax practices commonly found in nonprofits and the potential security risks in those practices. You’ll also learn some necessary procedures and recommendations you can implement immediately.

This course was previously titled “Intro to IT security.”


Leon A. Wilson

Chief of Digital Innovation and Chief Information Officer
The Cleveland Foundation
Profile Photo
Leon Wilson serves as the Chief for Digital Innovation & Chief Information Officer for the Cleveland Foundation, focusing on strategic initiatives that will help position the foundation as a leader in the use of technology in all areas of its work. In addition, Leon is responsible for helping to develop and implement an external Cleveland Foundation IT strategy that will focus on elevating Cleveland to become a recognized leader in technology, particularly in the areas of cybersecurity, big data, and civic tech. Leon brings more than 20 years of senior-level technology experience to the foundation and our community.
Blended courses run for one week and offer a mix of self-paced and live events to offer both the flexibility you need with the personal connection you want.
Pre-Work (Readings & Quiz)

Live Event

Recording Available
20-30 mins (Self-Paced)
20-30 mins (Self-Paced)


Several relevant articles will establish key concepts and ideas as a primer to the live event, and help you to identify questions and topics you want to explore further.

Knowledge Check

A brief quiz will reinforce what you've learned so far. Don't stress - it isn't pass/fail - it is just to help you remember and distill the concepts you read in the pre-work.

Live Event

This is a 90-minute live captioned online training with opportunities to interact with the presenter and your peers. And if you can't make the live session, you'll be able to access a captioned recording.


Faculty, themselves experts with a wealth of nonprofit experience, have created exercises that will reinforce what you've learned and give you actionable steps to improving your organization.

Earn While You Learn - Professional Credits

In addition to our own Nonprofit Technology Professional Certificate, NTEN is an approved provider for a number of other professional credentials programs. This course qualifies for the following credits:


NTEN Professional Certificate