The Government Accountability Office (GAO) has urged the general public to report through its hotline any fraudulent, wasteful or abusive activities regarding the use of Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act funds. FraudNet works to process allegations of misuse of federally funded programs by telephone or via the internet, GAO said Friday.
Users may submit reports anonymously and are advised to provide details on their cases thoroughly. The congressional watchdog typically refers the allegations it received to the Department of Justice, government inspector general offices or an investigative agency.
Gene Dodaro, comptroller general of the U.S. and head of GAO, said the federal government's stimulus package authorizes $2T for public health emergency and economic initiatives.
"The public can play a critical role in helping to identify improper activities or weaknesses in programs that warrant scrutiny. And FraudNet can play an important role in alerting GAO, potentially early on, to questionable uses of CARES Act funds," Dodaro added.
GAO data showed that the public sent 10,989 complaints to the agency's hotline during fiscal 2018 and roughly 1,200 of those reports were deemed worthy of pursuing.