Am I a whistleblower?
In general, a whistleblower is an insider within an organisation, who reports misconduct or dishonest or illegal activity that has occurred within that same organisation.
However, for the Corporations Act 2001 (the Corporations Act) to recognise and protect you as a ‘whistleblower’, you must meet the five criteria in Table 1 and do certain things when making your disclosure.
Table 1: Criteria for protection as a whistleblower
|1. Your role||You must be:
|2. Who the disclosure is made to||You must make your disclosure to:
|3. Providing your name||You must give your name to the person or authority you are making the disclosure to.|
|4. Reasonable grounds to suspect breach||You must have reasonable grounds to suspect that the information you are disclosing indicates that the company or company officer may have breached the Corporations Act or the Australian Securities and Investments Commission Act 2001(ASIC Act).|
|5. Made in good faith||You must make the disclosure in ‘good faith’. That means your disclosure must be honest and genuine, and motivated by wanting to disclose misconduct. Your disclosure will not be ‘in good faith’ if you have any other secret or unrelated reason for making the disclosure.|
There is no formal registration process for whistleblowers; the protections apply to anyone who meets the above criteria.
(reference: ASIC official website: https://asic.gov.au/about-asic/asic-investigations-and-enforcement/whistleblowing/guidance-for-whistleblowers/)