Access to firearms should be limited to responsible individuals. It is the firearm owner's obligation to take reasonable measures to protect access to firearms.
For example, if you have children at home, firearms should be kept out of reach and/or locked away. All new firearms include a cable lock, but these can be easily defeated by cutting tools. You should consider getting a locking cabinet or container (such as a locking tool cabinet), or a basic gun safe. Handgun safes can cost as little as $150, or $250 for a bio-metric (fingerprint) safe. Shotgun and rifle cabinets can cost as little as $150. These may be suitable for keeping firearms away from children.
If you are concerned about theft or fire, a safe is more suitable than a cabinet.
Additionally, several municipalities including Chicago and Cook County have storage requirement ordinances.
In Illinois, you must secure the firearm if you have children present in your home:
- Less than 18 years, if in Chicago (Ordinance 8-20-050)
- Less than 21 years, if in Cook County (Chapter 58, Article VIII, Sec. 58-205)
- Less than 14 years in other areas of Illinois (720 ILCS 5/24-9 Sec. 24-9)
Ref: Cook County Trigger Lock Gun Law Could Be Toughest in Illinois
Ref: Chicago Passes Tough New Gun Laws
Laws change over time. Familiarize yourself with your local laws.