On July 23, 2019, the US Securities and Exchange Commission announced a $500,000 whistleblower award to a foreign national for voluntarily providing original information that led to a successful enforcement action. The SEC cited several factors supporting the award, including:
- The whistleblower’s information was the first tip received by the SEC in the matter;
- The tip pointed the SEC to an important witness; and
- Without the tip, the misconduct would have been difficult to identify and prove, in part because it occurred abroad.
The SEC announcement stated that, since 2012, the agency’s whistleblower program has led to the imposition of more than $2 billion in monetary sanctions against wrongdoers, and to the award of approximately $385 million to sixty-five whistleblowers.