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Whistleblower Protection


The Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act of 2012 strengthened protection for federal employees who blow the whistle on waste, fraud, and abuse in government operations. It also directed Inspectors General to designate a Whistleblower Ombudsman to educate agency employees about prohibitions against, and rights and remedies relating to, retaliation for making protected disclosures. The Ombudsman is prohibited from acting as an employee's or former employee's legal representative, agent, or advocate.

Whistleblower disclosures can save lives as well as taxpayer dollars. They play a critical role in keeping our Government honest, efficient, and accountable. Recognizing that whistleblowers root out waste, fraud, and abuse, and protect public health and safety, federal laws strongly encourage employees to disclose wrongdoing.

In 2017, the Whistleblower Ombudsman title was changed to the Whistleblower Protection Coordinator. NSF employees may contact the NSF OIG Whistleblower Protection Coordinator at



Individuals who believe they have been improperly retaliated against may contact:

  1. The U.S. Office of Special Counsel OSC is an independent agency enforcing whistleblower protections, safeguarding the merit system and providing a secure channel for whistleblower disclosures. Information on filing a complaint with OSC may be found at:
  2. The Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB) Certain employees may be able to appeal directly to MSPB. More information on whistleblower MSPB appeals is available at:
  3. The National Science Foundation Office of Inspector General:
    Telephone: (800) 428-2189
    Written correspondence: 2415 Eisenhower Avenue, Alexandria, Virginia 22314