On August 9, 2022, the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced that it had granted whistleblower awards totaling approximately $16 million to two claimants who provided information and assistance in connection with a successful SEC enforcement action.
According to the SEC, the first claimant prompted the opening the investigation, provided information on difficult-to-detect violations, identified key witness, and provided information critical to the success of the enforcement action, all despite suffering hardship as a result. The SEC found this claimant—who contributed substantially to the success of the SEC’s investigation—deserved an award of approximately $13 million. The second claimant provided new and helpful information to the SEC that allowed the SEC to gain “a more complete picture” of the misconduct at issue; however, this claimant delayed reporting the misconduct for several years after becoming aware of it, and as such did not provide any information to the SEC until several years after the first claimant had done so. As a result, the SEC found this claimant deserved an award of approximately $3 million.
Since the whistleblower program began in 2012, the SEC has awarded approximately $1.3 billion to 281 individuals, including approximately $180 million this fiscal year.