During the week of January 21, 2021, the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) awarded approximately $6.3 million to five whistleblowers.
First, on June 21, 2021, the SEC announced awards of nearly $4 million to an informant whose information led to the initiation of an SEC investigation that resulted in a successful enforcement action. According to the SEC’s press release, the whistleblower provided extraordinary assistance, participating in hours of telephonic interviews and communicating dozens of times with investigative staff. The whistleblower also identified key witnesses and provided documents to the staff.
Also, on June 21, 2021, the SEC awarded approximately $1.3 million to three whistleblowers who provided the SEC with information that prompted the opening of an investigation.
Finally, on June 24, 2021, the SEC announced an award of more than $1 million to an individual whose information and assistant led to multiple successful SEC enforcement actions. According to the SEC’s press release, the whistleblower provided SEC staff with valuable information and ongoing assistance, including participating in interviews with the staff.
In total, the SEC has awarded around $938 million to 179 individuals since the whistleblower program became effective in August 2011. All awards are paid out of an investor protection fund established by Congress that is financed entirely through monetary sanctions paid to the SEC by securities law violators. No money has been taken or withheld from harmed investors to pay whistleblower awards.
Congress established the whistleblower program to incentivize whistleblowers with specific, timely, and credible information about federal securities law violations to report to the SEC. A whistleblower may receive an award if they voluntarily provide the SEC with qualifying information, leading to successful enforcement. The award can range from 10 percent to 30 percent of the money collected due to the enforcement action.
Individuals who have information regarding fraud or other violations of federal securities laws should contact whistleblower law firm Iorio Altamirano LLP for a free consultation to review your legal rights on how to file a whistleblower tip to the SEC and preserve eligibility to receive a whistleblower award.