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FIA sets up whistleblower hotline to report rules breaches

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FIA sets up whistleblower hotline to report rules breaches
By:
May 26, 2020, 8:58 AM

The FIA has set up a whistleblower hotline in a bid to help expose competitors or companies that are breaking the rules.

In an effort to improve the integrity of motorsport and the automotive world, the governing body has created an Ethics and Compliance Hotline for rule breaches to be brought to light.

Using the hotline, whistleblowers can anonymously report suspicious behaviour or misconduct.

The areas covered by the hotline included alleged violations of FIA ethical principles, including financial misconduct, bribery, corruption, and fraud; issues related to sporting integrity and the manipulation of competitions, or alleged violations of the FIA anti-doping regulations.

The FIA says the online reporting hotline is available 24 hours per day, seven days per week and that: “anyone can use it for raising legitimate, reliable and documented concerns of misconduct regarding.”

Any reports of breaches will be assessed and ‘full confidentiality’ for whistleblowers will be guaranteed through the whole process.

The FIA is clear that the hotline must only be used for ‘legitimate and documented’ concerns relation to the specific categories of ethical principals, sport integrity and doping.

It states: “All concerns of misconduct must be reported in good faith. The reporting person should have reasonable grounds to believe that the information reported is true, accurate and supported by evidence.”

Should the hotline be used in bad faith then the FIA warns that criminal and civil action could be taken against the reporting person.

The FIA adds: “Using the platform intentionally, recklessly or negligently in order to make a false or misleading representation for causing harm will result in a discarded report and possible disciplinary measures (including civil claim or criminal charges).”

The FIA hotline is available at https://fia-ethicsline.com/index.php

Last year's investigation in to the legality of Ferrari's power unit moved up a gear when a whisteblower revealed details about the behaviour of the engine, although the FIA's probe had already begun. 

FIA president Jean Todt told Motorsport.com earlier this year: "Saying that, we didn't need to do that [investigation], just because somebody who was a kind of whistleblower is telling us. But we need to make sure that each single team is running their show legal."

In the end, Ferrari and the FIA reached a secret agreement over the matter because it could not be proved that the Italian outfit had broken the regulations.

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About this article

Series Formula 1
Author Jonathan Noble