blow the whistle on

blow the whistle (on) (someone or something)

To expose or report something scandalous or deceptive. That company's stock price plummeted after the media blew the whistle on the CEO's embezzlement scandal. If you keep coming in late, I'm going to have to blow the whistle and report you to the department head.
See also: blow, whistle

blow the whistle on

1. Expose corruption or other wrongdoing, as in The President's speech blew the whistle on the opposition's leaking information. [Colloquial; 1930s]
2. Put a stop to, as in The registry decided to blow the whistle on new vanity plates. The term originally alluded to ending an activity (such as factory work) with the blast of a whistle. [Late 1800s]
See also: blow, on, whistle

blow the whistle on

bring an illicit activity to and end by informing on the person responsible. informal
This idiom comes from football, in which the referee blows a whistle to indicate that a player has broken the rules. Those who inform on others engaged in an illicit activity are now referred to as whistle-blowers .
See also: blow, on, whistle
References in periodicals archive ?
What you can do: Identify disconnects between ethics and action in your own work, then blow the whistle on yourself.
Blow the whistle on yourself or your team before someone else does it for you.
There is no incentive--except the moral obligation to tell the truth--to blow the whistle on government fraud, only disincentives.
If after acute self-examination and discussion with trusted experts, the advocate decides to blow the whistle on the organization, a tie is broken.
Supporters of the right to blow the whistle on Welsh councils have given a cautious welcome to Government plans to change a gagging clause in a new law.
The charity Public Concern at Work said workers were twice as likely to blow the whistle on wrongdoings than they were five years ago.
Public Concern at Work, the charity which helps people raise concerns, said workers were twice as likely to blow the whistle on wrongdoings than they were five years ago.
Auditors are likely to be more objective than IS managers or project team members and more willing to blow the whistle on troubled projects.
The study also revealed that even when auditors execute their responsibility to blow the whistle on troubled projects, the people responsible for controlling IS projects may refuse to pay attention, a phenomenon called the "deaf effect" [6].
First, many IS auditors reported that they or someone else did blow the whistle on a project.
Some internal IS auditors clearly feel obligated to blow the whistle on troubled projects.
They, and their buddies in Congress, are attacking the messengers, the folks like Bob Berman who blow the whistle on fraud.