Globally, whistleblowers are afforded greater protections today than ever before, but the threats that come along with unveiling corruption still prevent people from coming forward. The United States offers a great body of laws and protections for whistleblowers, more than any other country, and this is reflected in the number of whistleblower reports and also the amount of awards granted each year. EU member states, including Germany, are also implementing new protections for whistleblowers, but lag behind their American counterparts. Overall corporate governance guidelines and trends have had an effect on the whistleblowing industry as people are encouraged to come forward from inside any affected companies. However, although there is some progress in certain geographic locations, the world needs to encourage whistleblowers to come forward and report wrongdoing. The result will be a better and more sustainable world.
On March 23, international law firm DRRT hosted an online webinar called “Whistleblowers and Reporters: Importance of Access to Information.” DRRT mainly focuses on litigation outside of the U.S., where discovery is not possible. The firm stressed the importance that both whistleblowers and journalists have in releasing information critical for investors’ efforts to recover from damages the investors have incurred. The virtual event featured Jonathan Taylor, a whistleblower who exposed corruption and bribery in Dutch company SBM Offshore. The webinar also included Georgina Halford-Hall, chief executive of not-for-profit organization WhistleblowersUK, John Kostyack of the National Whistleblower Center (NWC), Lord Cromwell of the House of Lords in the UK, and Tom Warren, a forensic journalist from BuzzFeed News.