A whistleblower is a person who comes forward and shares his/her knowledge on any wrongdoing which he/she thinks is happening in the whole organisation or in a specific department. A whistleblower could be an employee, contractor, or a supplier who becomes aware of any illegal activities.
To protect whistleblowers from losing their job or getting mistreated there are specific laws. Most companies have a separate policy which clearly states how to report such an incident.
A whistleblower can file a lawsuit or register a complaint with higher authorities who will trigger a criminal investigation against the company or any individual department.
There are two types of whistleblowers: internal and external. Internal whistleblowers are those who report the misconduct, fraud, or indiscipline to senior officers of the organisation such as Head Human Resource or CEO.
External whistleblowing is a term used when whistleblowers report the wrongdoings to people outside the organisation such as the media, higher government officials, or police.
The crime or wrongdoing could be in the form of fraud, deceiving employees, corruptions, or any other act which misleads people. The Whistle Blowers Protection Act, 2011 lays down the complete framework to investigate alleged cases of wrongdoing.