Report fraud


Fraud reduces the effectiveness of the Australian Governments policies and Science programs, and it is the responsibility of the Department of Industry and Science its customers to prevent program benefits and privileges from being misused.

This department is determined to ensure that when fraud occurs, it is rapidly detected, fully investigated, prosecuted and that proceeds of the fraud are recovered.

What is fraud?

The Commonwealth Fraud Control Framework outlines the governments expectations for effective fraud control for all agencies and their employees and contractors. The three key documents in the Commonwealth Fraud Control Framework are the Fraud Rule, Fraud Policy and Fraud Guidance.

The Fraud Guidance defines fraud as:

"dishonestly obtaining a benefit, or causing a loss, by deception or other means".

In this definition, 'benefit' refers both to tangible items, such as money or objects, and intangible benefits including power, status or information.

The Fraud and Corruption Control Plan documents the strategic and operational approach to controlling fraud and corruption within the Department. It provides an overview of how fraud and corruption risks will be managed and compiles with the requirements of the Commonwealth Fraud Control Framework.

How to report fraud

A report can be made in person, in writing, by email, telephone or download a QR Code to use the secure reporting platform run by Whispli. 

  • the department’s Fraud Control Hotline: 02 6213 6376
  • Whispli Fraudsec
    The advantage of using Whispli is that while a two way conversation via email can be established, a user can choose to remain totally anonymous as Whispli scrubs all identifying features from where the report is made.
  • email:
  • Post:  Fraud Control Officer
    Department of Industry, Innovation and Science
    GPO Box 2013
    Canberra ACT 2601

The FCO provides confidential and independent advice to staff in relation to suspected fraud and may also advise and assist management where a concern has arisen.

What information should I provide?

You are encouraged to provide as much information as you know. Some information you may not consider important may be significant to the conduct of an investigation.

At the very least you should advise:

  • Who is involved? The organisation name and key individuals (including their date of birth if known) within that organisation. Any relevant addresses and phone numbers. Website addresses.
  • What fraud do you think has occurred? When, where and how did it occur?

What happens after I make a report?

The department takes all allegations of fraud seriously. Your information will be assessed and, where appropriate, will be investigated. Should you choose to provide your personal details when making an allegation, an investigator may be in contact to obtain further information. You should also be aware that you may be asked to provide a formal witness statement and that you may be asked to give evidence in court.

Due to privacy restrictions and the integrity of the investigative process, you may not be provided with information regarding the progress of the investigation. Similarly, unless you agree to provide a statement and attend court, the fact that you have made the complaint will not be divulged by investigators.

Privacy statement

Personal information is protected by law, including the Privacy Act 1988. Any personal information collected from you will only be used for purposes connected to the investigation of your allegations, including contacting you if further information is required.

Reporting fraud not related to departmental programs and staff

This departments Fraud Investigation Unit only investigates allegations relating to Commonwealth offences specific to this department. The following agencies may be the appropriate agency for your allegation, however, if in doubt, you can still contact us.

SCAMwatch can also provide information about fraud. SCAMwatch is a website run by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC). SCAMwatch provides information to consumers and small businesses about how to recognise, avoid and report scams.

Foreign bribery

The department is committed to raising awareness of the Convention on Combating Bribery of Foreign Public Officials and endeavours to minimise any opportunity of fraudulent and corrupt behaviour.