The chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission expressed his strong support for the commission’s whistleblower program along with a desire to see it become even more effective, Financial Advisor Magazine reports.
Speaking at an event commemorating National Whistleblower Day, SEC Chairman Gary Gensler said he has asked his staff to examine ways to strengthen the whistleblower program. It was created by Congress under the Dodd Frank Act of 2010 to provide monetary incentives for individuals who report possible violations of the federal securities laws to the SEC.
Gensler said the initiative has been an important tool in protecting investors in capital markets by identifying possible fraud and other violations. He added that one area of potential improvement would be reducing the processing time for whistleblowers to receive their awards.
Gensler also emphasized the importance of making sure that the people who report wrongdoing are protected from retaliation.
Since the program’s inception, nearly 180 whistleblowers have been awarded over $900 million in compensation. The largest individual award came in 2020, when a former banking trader received nearly $50 million for alerting the commission to a currency manipulation scheme.
Gensler said he worked to establish a whistleblower office at the Commodity Futures Trading Commission when he served as chairman of that agency.
In his prepared remarks, Gensler said, “I believe deeply in whistleblower programs and I look forward to building on the work of past Chairs to ensure the continued strength of the SEC’s program.”
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