The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) says it recently issued the largest-ever award in the history of the regulatory agency’s whistleblower program.
According to a new press release, the SEC awarded $279 million to a whistleblower who provided information and assistance that led to successful enforcement actions.
According to the SEC, the amount is more than double the $114 million whistleblower award that the regulator issued in October 2020.
The SEC’s Division of Enforcement Director Gurbir S. Grewal says tips from whistleblowers have contributed to enforcement actions that led to orders requiring bad actors to surrender over $4 billion in ill-gotten gains and interest.
“As this award shows, there is a significant incentive for whistleblowers to come forward with accurate information about potential securities law violations.”
Creola Kelly, Chief of the SEC’s Office of the Whistleblower, says the unnamed person who received the award provided assistance through multiple interviews and written submissions, which aided the success of the regulator’s enforcement actions.
“While the whistleblower’s information did not prompt the opening of the Commission’s investigation, their information expanded the scope of misconduct charged.”
Whistleblowers may be eligible to receive an award if they voluntary provide the regulator with timely and credible information that leads to successful enforcement actions. Awards can range between 10% to 30% of the money collected when the fines or sanctions exceed $1 million.
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