Frequently Asked Questions
Criminal offenses investigated include but are not limited to:
- Tampering with a governmental record.
- Securing execution of document by deception.
- Misapplication of fiduciary property.
- Conversion of funds.
- Abuse of official capacity.
- Gift to a public servant by a person subject to his or her jurisdiction.
- Breach of computer security.
- Organized crime.
- Money laundering.
No, you may choose to remain anonymous and not fill out the contact information. Not providing this information prevents us from contacting you to discuss your report or request additional information.
More details enable us to better assess the reported allegations. Please consider including the following information:
- Contact information (home phone, daytime phone, and/or cell phone numbers, physical address, email address)
- Date the incident occurred.
- Date the incident was discovered.
- The estimated amount of loss.
- Name, job title, contact information for individuals involved.
- Name of the entity involved (agency, higher education institution, company, organization, division, section, team).
- Detailed description of the incident. Include the number, type and location of computers, servers, networks, mobile devices, and data storage devices involved.
- Whether the incident was reported to other government agencies and, if so, which government agencies.
- Any law enforcement agencies that have been notified.
- Specific law enforcement entities that have been notified, if any.
If I am an employee or contractor who works with a state agency or higher education institution and sees suspicious activities and/or a fraudulent act, may I report this to your agency?
Yes. An employee and/or a contractor who works with a state agency or higher education institution and becomes aware of a situation that involves suspicious activities or fraudulent acts may report the allegations to the State Auditor’s Office.
Concerned citizens, legislators, agency and higher education internal auditors, law enforcement agencies, and agency or higher education institution employees and/or contractors are encouraged to contact the State Auditor’s Office and submit a complaint if they are aware of any suspicious or fraudulent activities.
Will I be protected under the Whistleblower Act if I report an illegal act to the State Auditor’s Office?
For information on the Whistleblower Act, please see the Attorney General of Texas Whistleblower Act publication.
The Investigations team reviews complaints based on the information that is provided.
- Investigative analysts and management will assess the information provided for appropriate action. If possible, we may contact you to discuss the complaint or request additional information.
- Complaints that rise to the level of a possible criminal offense will be assigned or referred to an investigator.
- Not all complaints will rise to the level of a possible criminal offense. Such reports will be forwarded to an audit manager and/or the Risk Assessment Team for administrative or audit planning consideration.
The State Auditor’s Office does not provide status updates or information on the handling of a complaint or conduct of an investigation.
Texas Government Code, Section 321.022, requires the administrative head to report the reasonable basis to believe that money received from the state by a department, entity, client, or contractor of the department or entity was lost, misappropriated, or misused or that other fraudulent or unlawful conduct has occurred. What is a department or entity? What does “reasonable cause to believe” mean?
- A department or entity includes every state department, agency, board, bureau, institution, or commission.
- A reasonable cause to believe exists when a set of facts would lead a reasonable and prudent person to believe that money was lost, misappropriated, or misused or that other fraudulent or unlawful conduct has occurred. This threshold is generally met prior to carrying out an investigation in to the issue.
- The State Auditor’s Office may investigate the report or monitor any investigation conducted by the department or entity.
Yes. We coordinate with internal auditors and/or investigative groups; federal and/or state prosecutors; and law enforcement agencies at the city, county, state, and/or federal levels.