Audit Hotline Frequently Asked Questions
Who Should Report?How Can I Report? / Report Now | Audit
Why Should I
Is Fraud, Waste And Abuse?
Should Be Reported?
Should Not Be Reported?
After I Report The Incident to the Hotline?
Can I Report Anonymously?
What Happens If I Identify
Who Should Report?
Anyone who has direct knowledge of or is aware of fraud, waste or abuse of DuPage County resources:
- County Residents;
- County Taxpayers;
- County Elected Officials;
- County Department Heads;
- County Employees;
- County Vendors, Contractors, Consultants;
- County Volunteers; and,
- Other parties who suspect or are aware of fraud, waste, and abuse of DuPage County resources.
Please do not initiate an investigation on your own or alert the individual(s) involved of an impending or on-going investigation if you suspect or are aware of such activity.
Why Should I Report?
Why should you report? Because tax dollars help to support and fund the operations of DuPage County government and taxpayers deserve government to be honest, effective, and efficient. One way to accomplish this is for you to report any suspicious
activity to the Audit Hotline. We all suffer when there is wrongdoing in our government. Please do not assume that there are others who know of or have reported the issue. It is up to you!
What is Fraud, Waste, and
Fraud, Waste, and Abuse includes Illegal, Wasteful, or
Improper Activities Relative to County Resources.
FRAUD entails the dishonest and deliberate course of action that results in the obtaining of money, property, or an advantage in which the recipient would not normally be entitled. The intentional deception perpetrated by an individual or individuals, or an organization or organizations, either
internal or external to County government, which could result in a tangible or intangible benefit to themselves, others, or could cause detriment to others or the County. Fraud includes a false representation of a matter of fact, whether by words or by conduct, by false or misleading statements, or by concealment of
that which should have been disclosed, and is intended to deceive.
WASTE entails the expenditure or allocation of resources significantly in excess of need. Waste does not necessarily involve an element of private use nor of personal gain, but invariably signifies poor management. "Waste" means the intentional or unintentional, thoughtless or careless
expenditure, consumption, mismanagement, use, or squandering of resources owned or operated by the County to the detriment or potential detriment of the County. Waste also includes incurring unnecessary costs because of inefficient or ineffective practices, systems, or controls. Waste does not normally lead to an
allegation of "fraud".
ABUSE entails the exploitation of "loopholes" to the limits of County ordinances and laws, primarily for personal advantage. For example, an individual may abuse travel allowances by intentionally and unnecessarily scheduling meetings in another city on a Friday
afternoon and on the following Monday morning in order to claim per diem over a weekend. "Abuse" means the excessive, or improper use of something, or the use of something in a manner contrary to the natural or legal rules for its use; the intentional destruction, diversion, manipulation, misapplication, maltreatment,
or misuse of resources owned or operated by the County; or extravagant or excessive use so as to abuse one's position or authority. "Abuse" does not necessarily lead to an allegation of "fraud".
Examples of fraud,
waste, and abuse activities include:
- Theft of County Funds, Equipment, Supplies, or Any Other County Resources
- Payroll Fraud
- Insurance Claim Fraud
- Expense Claim Fraud
- Procurement Fraud/Bid Rigging
- Submission of Fraudulent Certified Transcripts of Payroll to the County
- Wasteful, Excessive, Unnecessary, or Inappropriate Purchases or Expenditures
- Fictitious Suppliers/False Invoicing
- Falsification of Records
- Under or Over Billing
- Personal Use or Abuse of County Property Including Vehicles, Equipment, and Supplies
- Misuse of One's Position for Personal Gain
- Soliciting or Accepting a Bribe or Kickback
- Gross Mismanagement or Neglect of Duty
- Improper Handling or Reporting of Financial Transactions
- Authorizing or Receiving Compensation for Goods Not Received, Services Not Performed, or Hours Not Worked
- Willful Violation of Laws, Regulations, or Contractual Obligations When Conducting County Business
Perhaps you are not sure that the issue
you have knowledge of amounts to fraud, waste, or abuse, but it is such that you
know something is not quite right. Please report it anyway! Who knows, it may
turn out to be something unforeseen or it may corroborate previously reported
information and result in a finding of fraud, waste or abuse.
What Should Be Reported?
What should you report? Whichever method you decide you want to use to report, whether on the phone, online, or in-person, it is important that you provide as much detailed information as possible so that your issue can be properly investigated. Six basic elements
should be included in your report:
Who are the individuals responsible for and who is aware of the improper activity?
What is the improper activity? What makes it improper? Is there documentation that substantiates the reported improper activity?
Where did the improper activity occur; within a County department or elsewhere? Where can the investigator locate the individual(s) involved or who have information about the activity? Where can an investigator find documents or other evidence related to the activity?
When did the activity occur? When did you discover it?
Why did the activity occur? Did the activity benefit those involved?
How was the activity able to occur? Were controls circumvented that allowed the activity to occur?
What Should Not Be Reported?
The Audit Hotline is reserved for reporting instances of fraud, waste, and abuse within DuPage County government under the jurisdiction of the DuPage County Board and County-wide Elected Officials. It is not for general complaints, suggestions, personnel issues, or complaints about your neighbors, private
businesses, and other non-governmental entities; unless related to the County government. If something reported is found to be not within the authority of the Auditor's Office to investigate, it will be referred to the appropriate agency or authority as necessary.
Most importantly, please make sure
that the allegation of fraud, waste or abuse of DuPage County resources you
report is as accurate and truthful as possible. Do not intentionally report
false or misleading information. The intentional reporting of false or purposely
misleading information can result in civil or criminal liability.
What Happens After I Report the Incident to the Hotline?
The information that you report is received by the Auditor's Office who initiates and coordinates all investigations. If you speak with an Auditor directly either on the phone or in-person, the Auditor will listen to your allegation and request pertinent information. Each complaint received is assigned a complaint
identification number. To the extent allowed by law, professional staff will review and handle the information reported to the Audit Hotline in a confidential and professional manner, and will conduct a prompt preliminary investigation of the alleged activity. A full investigation will follow if
evidence substantiates possible fraud, waste, or abuse.
Yes, you can remain anonymous; you do not have to provide your name when you report. However, please be aware that we will not be able to contact you if additional information is required relative to your reported allegation of fraud, waste or abuse, which may curtail any ensuing
investigation. If you decide to identify yourself, the Auditor's Office will not knowingly disclose any information that would identify you without your express permission, unless required by law. If you still wish to remain anonymous, please do not provide your name or any other information that may personally
What Happens If I Identify
The Auditor's Office is committed to protecting the confidentiality and anonymity of individuals who report allegations of fraud, waste and abuse of County resources to the Audit Hotline. If you identify yourself, your name and contact information will be held in strictest confidence
and will not be disclosed to third parties unless required by law.
In accordance with the Office of the DuPage County Auditor, detailed information received pursuant to a report of fraud, waste or abuse or any ongoing investigation thereof shall be considered work papers of the Office and shall be confidential. Individuals should know
however, that such information may become known during the course of any investigation or as required by law. Whether you report anonymously or not, the County Auditor's Office will treat your report confidentially.