The intelligence community's inspector general debunked reports that the requirements to file a whistleblower complaint were changed before a whistleblower raised concerns about President Trump's July 25 phone call with the Ukrainian president, CNN reports. In a press release Monday, Inspector General Michael Atkinson said that the whistleblower filed his complaint on August 12, using the same form the office had in place since May 2018—contradicting claims that the form the whistleblower used was altered prior to its filing. Additionally, Atkinson said it was never a requirement for a whistleblower to have first-hand knowledge of the event in question in order to file a complaint. “Although the form requests information about whether the Complainant possesses first-hand knowledge about the matter about which he or she is lodging the complaint, there is no such requirement set forth in the statute,” he said.
Atkinson also shot down claims that the whistleblower's complaint was not based on direct information and therefore “hearsay.” He stated that the whistleblower claimed to have “both first-hand and other information.” “The ICIG reviewed the information provided as well as other information gathered and determined that the complaint was both urgent and that it appeared credible,” Atkinson wrote.