The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has announced awards of more than $6m to two whistleblowers who provided critical information and assistance in two separate covered actions.

In one action, the SEC issued an award of more than $3m to a whistleblower who was solicited to invest in a product that they believed was being misrepresented. The individual alerted the SEC to the potential misconduct, which prompted the opening of the investigation, and continued to cooperate with the SEC's enforcement staff.

In the other, the SEC awarded a whistleblower more than $3m for providing information that prompted the opening of an investigation. The whistleblower, an insider, initially reported their concerns internally, and later submitted a detailed tip and met with the SEC's enforcement staff multiple times to provide additional information during the investigation.

Creola Kelly, chief of the SEC's Office of the Whistleblower, said: "When confronted with potential wrongdoing, today's whistleblowers refused to look the other way, but instead, chose to do the right thing by reporting it to the SEC.

"Insiders and outsiders alike can make a tremendous impact on the SEC's ability to detect misconduct and protect investors when they decide to become whistleblowers."

The SEC says it has awarded approximately $1.3bn to 276 individuals since issuing its first award in 2012.

All payments are made out of an investor protection fund established by the US Congress that is financed entirely through monetary sanctions paid to the SEC by securities law violators.

No money has been taken or withheld from harmed investors to pay whistleblower awards. Whistleblowers may be eligible for an award when they voluntarily provide the SEC with original, timely, and credible information that leads to a successful enforcement action. Whistleblower awards can range from 10%-30% of the money collected when the monetary sanctions exceed $1m.

The US Dodd-Frank Act outlines the SEC protection and confidentiality of whistleblowers, The SEC does not disclose any information that could reveal a whistleblower's identity.

For more information about the whistleblower program and how to report a tip, visit