Last week, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced its intention to pay a whistleblower $17 million for reporting information that led to fines in an SEC enforcement action, and a related covered action.
Speaking on the award, Chief of the SEC Whistleblower Office, Creola Kelly stated that the award “underscores the SEC’s commitment to rewarding meritorious whistleblowers who provide valuable information and exemplary cooperation that advance the agency’s enforcement efforts.”
The award also marks the roaring success that the SEC Whistleblower program has enjoyed. Since it began in 2012, the program has paid out approximately $1.3 billion to 278 individuals. These payments have come from a protected fund established by Congress that is funded solely through fines and sanctions paid to the SEC. This means the average payment to whistleblowers stands at almost $5 million.
However, none of this money comes at the expense of the taxpayer or harmed investors. In fact, the SEC has recovered almost $5 billion for the Treasury from enforcement actions based on tips received through the Office of the Whistleblower.