Investigations as an Inspector General function. Investigations is the IG function that provides the commander or directing authority another means through which to resolve allegations of impropriety. Inspectors General may investigate violations of policy, regulation, or law; mismanagement; unethical behavior; fraud; or misconduct.
Commanders may opt for an IG investigation or investigative inquiry when extreme discretion is necessary or the allegation requires preliminary fact finding before deciding to resolve the alleged impropriety in command, IG, or other channels. The primary purpose of IG investigations and investigative inquiries is to resolve allegations of impropriety; to preserve confidence in the chain of command; and, if allegations are not substantiated, to protect the good name of the subject or suspect.
Inspectors General who conduct investigations or investigative inquiries obtain evidence to determine if the allegations are "substantiated" or "not substantiated" and if any issues associated with the allegation (or allegations) are "founded" or "unfounded" The preponderance of credible evidence is the standard of proof IG's use to substantiate or not substantiate allegations. Preponderance is defined as superiority of weight and indicates that the alleged impropriety probably occurred.