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How do I whistleblow?

Many people considering blowing the whistle contact the leading whistleblowing charity, Public Concern at Work. They provide independent and confidential advice to workers who are unsure about whether or how to blow the whistle. Their free advice line is managed by qualified lawyers with a wealth of experience in whistleblowing law and practice.

Your options for blowing the whistle will usually be influenced by:

  • The level of confidence you have in the reporting options, and the reassurances set out in your firm’s whistleblowing policy
  • How important remaining anonymous is to you and the extent to which you feel each reporting option is able/likely to respect this
  • The extent to which you are confident that your concerns are substantially true
  • Whether you are an approved person under the Financial Services and Markets Act
  • Whether your disclosure will ‘qualify’ as a protected disclosure under the Public Interest Disclosure Act
  • Whether the events you’ve encountered fall within the remit of a ‘prescribed person or body’, for example the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA)
  • The immediacy and seriousness of events that may be unfolding around you: e.g. do they present any danger to someone’s life?
  • In the event of you having previously raised this concern, how it was treated and what you know in relation to its response

For many members of the CII, working in the regulated environment of financial services, this usually adds up to a choice between blowing the whistle within your firm or to the FCA. The FCA strongly encourages workers to speak up about their concerns within their firm first, but they recognise that sometimes this may not be feasible.

If you’ve decided to blow the whistle within your firm, you should follow the procedures set out in its whistleblowing policy.

Reporting concerns to the FCA

If you’ve decided to report your concern to the FCA, you should go the FCA's whistleblowing page. You’ll find answers to frequently asked questions and details of the dedicated telephone line it operates for whistleblowers.