The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced awards totaling approximately $22 million to two whistleblowers whose information and assistance were of crucial importance to successful SEC enforcement actions brought against a financial services firm.
The first whistleblower received an award of $18 million, while the second whistleblower received a $4 million award. The larger award was in recognition of the fact that, among other things, the first whistleblower was the initial source of the investigation while the second whistleblower submitted information much later after the investigation was already underway.
“This case demonstrates once again the value of the whistleblower program in helping to protect investors, and the Commission’s continued commitment to rewarding individuals who provide high-quality tips,” said Emily Pasquinelli, Acting Chief of the SEC’s Office of the Whistleblower. “The reporting of credible information by these whistleblowers and their subsequent cooperation with the staff’s investigation allowed the Commission to better understand complex transactions related to the matters under investigation.”
The SEC has awarded approximately $838 million to 156 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. 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 percent to 30 percent 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.
For more information about the whistleblower program and how to report a tip, visit www.sec.gov/whistleblower.