Whistleblower awards are typically given to individuals who provide new information or leads to the SEC which results in significant sanctions. In November, the SEC has announced an award of over $1.1 million to a whistleblower who did not provide new information for an investigation, but rather provided independent analysis which led the staff to look at new conduct during an ongoing investigation.
The SEC found that the whistleblower’s information and exemplary assistance helped the agency bring an emergency action preventing further investor harm. This whistleblower examined publicly available materials and conducted an analysis that revealed important new insights into the securities law violations, which helped the SEC protect investor assets from dissipation by the wrongdoer.
Today’s award reflects the Commission’s commitment to award whistleblowers who provide high-quality independent analysis,” said Jane Norberg, Chief of the SEC’s Office of the Whistleblower. “Whistleblowers who devote time and effort to develop unique insights may afford the Commission important information about possible securities laws violations.
The SEC has awarded more than $720 million to 113 individuals since issuing its first award in 2012. All payments are made 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.
The SEC Whistleblower Program
Whistleblowers may be eligible for an award when they voluntarily provide the SEC with original, timely, and credible information that leads to a successful enforcement action. Whistleblower awards can range from 10-30% of the money collected when the monetary sanctions exceed $1 million.
As set forth in the Dodd-Frank Act, the SEC protects the confidentiality of whistleblowers and does not disclose information that could reveal a whistleblower’s identity.
The attorneys at Sallah Astarita & Cox, LLC are former brokerage firm and SEC attorneys who represent whistleblowers and all market participants in compliance, regulatory and litigation matters. For more information about the whistleblower program and for assistance in reporting a tip, contact Mark Astarita, of Sallah Astarita & Cox, LLC at 212-509-6544.
Have a securities law question? Call Sallah Astarita & Cox at 212-509-6544.