On November 17, 2014, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s Office of the Whistleblower released its 2014 Annual Report to Congress. According to the report, 2014 was a historic year for the SEC Whistleblower program in terms of both the number and dollar amount of whistleblower awards. The SEC issued whistleblower awards to more individuals in 2014 than in all previous years combined.
The SEC whistleblower award program was created to encourage whistleblowers to report securities violations committed by publicly traded companies. When a whistleblower tip is filed with the SEC and leads to successful enforcement action netting penalties of at least US$1 million the whistleblower who filed the tip can be awarded between 10 per cent and 30 per cent of money collected by the SEC.
The SEC’s report also revealed that, under its whistleblower award program, it had made payouts to nine people in 2013-14.
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