Office of Inspector General Hotline:
The Office of Inspector General (OIG) maintains a Hotline to facilitate the reporting of allegations of fraud, waste, abuse, or mismanagement in U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) programs or operations. If you wish to report such allegations, you may call, send a letter, or email the OIG Hotline as identified at the right. Allegations may be reported by DOE employees, DOE contractors, or the general public.
Issues that should be reported:
- Abuse of funds
- Contract, Procurement, and Grant Fraud
- Environment, Health, and Safety Violations
- Computer Crimes
- Product Substitution and Suspect/Counterfeit Parts
- Bribery, Kickbacks, and Gratuities
- False Statements and False Claims
- Conflicts of Interest and Ethics Violations
- Theft and/or Abuse of Government Property
- Other Violations of Federal Laws and Regulations
Callers are encouraged to provide relevant and specific details of their complaints, including the identity of the person, company, or organization alleged to have engaged in wrongdoing; a description of the alleged impropriety; the DOE facility and program affected by the alleged misconduct; contract numbers; date(s) of alleged wrongdoing; how the caller is aware of the alleged impropriety; the identity of potential witnesses; and the identity and location of supporting documentation.
Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) Contractor Business Ethics Compliance Program Disclosure Requirements:
Contractors shall timely disclose, in writing, to the Office of Inspector General, with a copy to the Contracting Officer, whenever the Contractor has credible evidence that a principal, employee, agent, or subcontractor of the Contractor has committed a violation of the civil False Claims Act or of Federal criminal law involving fraud, conflict of interest, bribery, or gratuity violations in connection with the award, performance, or closeout of a contract or any related subcontract. The individual making the disclosure must be an officer or manager empowered to speak for the company. Additional information regarding these reporting requirements can be found in the December 12, 2008, FAR Amendment at http://edocket.access.gpo.gov/2008/E8-26953.htm.
Upon receipt of a specific allegation of fraud, waste, abuse, or mismanagement, the OIG may take any one of the following actions: open an investigation, audit, or inspection; refer the matter to DOE management for appropriate review and action; or refer the allegation to another Federal agency. Allegations with limited specificity or merit may be held in abeyance until further, specific details are reported.
Callers may remain anonymous:
Individuals who contact the Hotline, via telephone or letter, are not required to provide their identity to the Hotline operator. However, persons who report allegations are encouraged to identify themselves in the event additional questions arise as the OIG evaluates or pursues their allegations.
Confidentiality for DOE federal employees is established by Section 7(b) of the IG Act, which prevents the IG from disclosing the identity of a DOE federal employee who reports an allegation or provides information, without the employee’s consent, unless the IG determines that disclosure is unavoidable during the course of the investigation. Because of their unique role within DOE, the IG also applies this provision to DOE facilities management contractor employees. All others who report allegations are not entitled to confidentiality automatically. Such individuals may request confidentiality and these requests will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. Individuals who are granted confidentiality are additionally advised that:
- Confidentiality applies only to one’s identity, not to the information provided (i.e., the IG may, if necessary, share the facts and circumstances provided by the individual);
- They may later consent to release their identity;
- Their identity may be disclosed to other OIG personnel, prosecutors and law enforcement agencies or may be disclosed pursuant to court order or Congressional committee request;
- Their identity will be included in OIG files, memoranda, records, etc.;
- The OIG cannot control the extent to which other persons to whom they reported allegations or information will protect their identity;
- Given the nature of the information provided by the person, other individuals, including coworkers, subordinates, supervisors, etc., may deduce or infer the OIG’s source of the information; and,
- A request for confidentiality may preclude the OIG from taking further action, if the information provided is of such a specific or personal nature that action could not be taken without the disclosure of identity (e.g., a person alleges retaliation).