Whistleblower announcements on the rise in 2023

Whistleblower announcements on the rise in 2023
Whistleblower announcements on the rise in 2023

More whistleblower announcements were processed by the Confederation in 2023, compared to the previous year. The Federal Financial Control (CDF) analyzed 372, or 93 more than in 2022.

While in 2020 and 2021, many announcements related to the Confederation’s aid measures in the face of Covid-19, this type of reporting decreased in 2022. With 22 cases, the trend continued in 2023, specifies the CDF on Tuesday in its annual report. The announcements mainly focused on compensation for reduced working hours and hardship cases.

Of the 372 reports, 222 came from people outside the Confederation through an employment contract, i.e. suppliers, individuals or employees of private companies. Nearly three quarters (71%) of the announcements were anonymous (compared to 88% in 2022).

193 whistleblowers used the encrypted electronic mailbox system to communicate with the dedicated CDF unit. The majority of ads (87%) arrived on the platform. Others were received by post, email or telephone.

Useful announcements

The CDF notes that these announcements are used for its work: more than half (58%) of the announcements were useful for ongoing audits or are the origin, in the medium or long term, of new audits. In 2023, the SFAO transmitted eleven cases to the criminal prosecution authorities for information or further action. None concerned employees of the Confederation.

Since 2011, the federal administration has had a legal basis to protect whistleblowers. Federal employees are obliged to report crimes and misdemeanors prosecuted ex officio, and the law grants them protection against professional harm.

The CDF manages a secure Internet platform which collects advertisements. Anyone can make a report, whether they work for the Confederation or not.

Financing of political life

In its annual report, the CDF also recalls that in 2023, it carried out its new tasks relating to the financing of political life for the first time, for the federal elections. The actors showed a great willingness to comply with the new provisions, he notes.

But it is still too early to draw conclusions. The rules will need to be evaluated. In particular, it will be necessary to examine whether the decision to assign the CDF the role of competent body in this area was judicious.

In 2023, the CDF published 81 reports on the profitability of subsidies, the efficiency of digital transformation projects and the effectiveness of measures to encourage decarbonization. Its expenses amounted to 33.1 million francs.

/ATS

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