From the Summary: "Intelligence community (IC) whistleblowers are those employees or contractors working in any of the 18 elements of the IC who disclose their reasonable belief of a violation of law, rule, or regulation; gross mismanagement; waste of resources; abuse of authority; or a substantial danger to public health and safety. The Director of National Intelligence (DNI) whistleblowing policy and guidance are publicly available and specifically address the process for making protected disclosures and identify whistleblower protections for IC contractors, members of the Armed Forces, and federal IC employees. [...] This report traces the evolution of IC whistleblower protections in legislation and presidential and IC directives. Effective whistleblowing protections are considered as much about instilling confidence in the integrity and comprehensiveness of the process for submitting a complaint as they are about the process itself. When IC employees have confidence they can make protected disclosures anonymously and without fear of retribution, they are often more likely to adhere to a process that is also intended to protect classified information. Conversely, a lack of confidence can increase the chances of wrongdoing going unreported or classified information being compromised through an employee's making a complaint outside of proper channels."
CRS Report for Congress, R45345
Congressional Research Service: https://crsreports.congress.gov/