A whistleblower (or whistle-blower) is commonly defined as someone who witnesses fraud, corruption, waste or abuse within a private or public organization and reports the crimes to law enforcement or other proper authorities. A whistleblower brings forth information of wrongdoing that would not have otherwise been known. There is no uniform definition of a whistleblower. However, the definition commonly used includes the following:
A whistleblower (or whistle-blower) is someone:
- Whose loyalty is to the truth;
- Who becomes an informant to the government on corporate crimes;
- Who exposes violations of law, including violations of the Internal Revenue Code, Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, the Securities Exchange Act, the Commodity Exchange Act, Bank Secrecy Act, False Claims Act, fraud in government contracting or procurement, environmental laws, or threats to the public safety;
- Who discloses government misconduct;
- Who participates in official whistleblower reward programs, such as those under the Dodd-Frank Act, the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, Commodity Exchange Act, qui tam, and IRS tax law.