Whistleblower Program 2019 Annual Report
The SEC’s Office of the Whistleblower issued its annual report for fiscal year 2019.
In fiscal 2019, the SEC received 5,212 whistleblower tips – slightly below the 5,282 received in fiscal 2018 – viewed against the total of over 33,000 tips provided to the agency since the program began. More importantly, however, the number of tips in recent years has grown dramatically, increasing by approximately 74 percent since fiscal year 2012, reflecting the continued effectiveness of the sizeable financial incentives that the program offers to individuals who report possible wrongdoing to the SEC.
In terms of dollar amounts, whistleblower awards in fiscal 2019 totaled approximately $60 million, paid to eight individuals whose whistleblower tips either led to the opening of an investigation or otherwise “significantly contributed” to a successful SEC enforcement action. This compares to the over $168 million that the Commission awarded to 13 individuals in fiscal 2018. (Overall, the SEC has awarded approximately $387 million to 67 individuals in connection with 55 enforcement actions since the program was established.)