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About the Hotline

The OSA's Fraud Reporting Hotline is available to receive reports of fraud concerns/allegations to help identify those situations in which state employees or contractors may be using their position or access to commit fraud against the State or others.

During the 2017 Legislative Session, the General Assembly passed House Bill 17-1223 and it was signed into law by the Governor. House Bill 17-1223 established a new statutory framework for the Hotline, including new requirements for handling reports to the Hotline and referring matters to the affected state agency, protections for individuals who make a report to the Hotline, and, under certain circumstances, authority for the State Auditor to investigate allegations reported to the Hotline. The OSA is in the process of making changes to its Hotline procedures, including a new web-based reporting form, to implement House Bill 17-1223, which takes effect on August 9, 2017.

Reporting a Fraud Concern/Allegation

In order for us to properly evaluate and respond to your reported fraud concern/allegation, please provide the following information:

  • A detailed description of the concern/allegation
  • Relevant dates and times
  • The names of agencies and individuals involved
  • Your contact information

If you wish to remain anonymous, you do not have to provide details that will reveal your identity. However, please be aware that anonymous reports without sufficient information generally cannot be pursued. We encourage you to provide us your contact information for follow-up purposes, if needed.

What We Do With Fraud Hotline Reports?

The OSA is not an investigatory or law enforcement agency. Therefore, we assess fraud hotline reports solely from the perspective of the OSA's audit authority. We use reports of fraud concerns/allegations to help inform our overall audit planning and risk assessment processes.

The OSA does not have jurisdiction over individuals, private entities, nonprofit entities, local governments, or federal agencies. Even if the OSA does not have jurisdiction over your fraud concern/allegation, we will do our best to refer you to the appropriate state, federal, or local agency that may be able to help you. For example:

  • We refer fraud complaints/allegations to other state agencies (e.g., internal audit unit, program management) because they may be in a better position to evaluate and act on the specific concern/allegation.
  • We refer fraud concerns/allegations involving cities, counties, school districts, or other local governments to the local government itself and/or to the local government's financial auditors (if applicable) because the OSA does not have statutory authority to audit local governments.
  • We refer fraud hotline reports about individuals' legal and tax matters or regulatory or other administrative proceedings with state agencies to the state agency involved because it is not the OSA's role or purpose to intervene or act as an ombudsman in these types of situations.
What Is Fraud?

Fraud is...

  • an intentional misrepresentation of fact;
  • whether by words or by conduct, by false or misleading allegations, or by concealment of what should have been disclosed;
  • made by one person to another;
  • with knowledge of its falsity;
  • for the purpose of inducing the other person to act, and upon which the other person relies;
  • resulting in injury or damage.

 

Categories

There are three general categories of fraud that could potentially fall under the purview of the OSA's fraud reporting hotline, as follows:

Asset Misappropriation involves the theft or misuse of money, equipment, information, supplies, or other State resources. Common examples include:

  • Use of procurement cards to purchase personal items
  • Skimming cash receipts
  • Falsifying payroll information (salary/wages), time records, and paid leave accruals and use
  • Submitting false expense reimbursements

Corruption involves state employees or officials using their influence in a business transaction, contrary to their duty to the State or the rights of another, in order to procure some benefit for themselves or another person. Common examples include:

  • Soliciting or accepting a bribe or kickback
  • Bid rigging
  • Illegal gratuities
  • Extorting funds from third parties
  • Engaging in transactions where a conflict of interest is present

Financial Statement Fraud is the intentional misstatement or omission of material transactions, events, or other information from State's financial reports and exhibits with the intent to deceive financial statement users. Common examples include:

  • Manipulation, falsification, or alteration of accounting records or supporting documents from which financial statements are prepared
  • Intentional misapplication of accounting principles relating to amounts, classification, manner of presentation, or disclosure
  • Deliberately overstating assets or revenues
  • Deliberately understating liabilities or expenses