The number of whistleblower tips has increased sharply. More than half concern investment fraud, especially with crypto assets |  Dominik Tyrybon

In 2020, 278 tips were submitted via the whistleblower platform on the Austrian Financial Market Authorities (FMA) website. This is a new record high since the introduction of the system in 2014 and an increase of 57 % in the past five years alone. This information channel is becoming increasingly popular because it technically guarantees whistleblowers absolute anonymity, which creates trust and security.

With the current crypto boom there are also more and more people who want to make money from it in a fraudulent way. Two-thirds of the indications of investment fraud today already concern offers in connection with crypto assets and virtual currencies, with sales taking place via dubious or criminal online trading platforms, often advertised via social media like Facebook, WhatsApp, TikTok or Telegram.

In 2020 alone, whistleblower tips led to seven investor warnings, 42 reports to the public prosecutor's office, and many regulatory proceedings by the FMA as well as penalty findings. The full press release can be read in German here.

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