US authorities have begun to investigate Microsoft over allegations the firm bribed officials in China and two European Union states, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Reports suggested a former Microsoft executive had accused the firm's business partners of bribing authorities for government contracts. US officials are currently looking into whether Microsoft participated with its partners in the bribery actions.
Microsoft said it is currently unable to comment on the on-going legal matter. However, it will continue to work with US authorities on the case.
"We take all allegations brought to our attention seriously, and we co-operate fully in any government inquiries," wrote John Frank, Microsoft general council and vice president in a blog post.
"Like other large companies with operations around the world, we sometimes receive allegations about potential misconduct by employees or business partners, and we investigate them fully, regardless of the source."
According to the Wall Street Journal, the US Department of Justice (DoJ) and Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) are currently examining whether Microsoft was complicit in bribing government officials in China, Romania, and Italy.
The WSJ added that Microsoft partners are being investigated because they may have offered government officials in those countries gifts and trips in return for government contracts.
While Microsoft has yet to completely dismiss the allegations, the firm has said that many allegations of this type turn out to be false. In his blog post, Frank said that it's important to review allegations of wrongdoing but not all allegations turn out to be correct.
"The matters raised in the Wall Street Journal are important, and it is appropriate that both Microsoft and the government review them," continued Frank.
"It is also important to remember that it is not unusual for such reviews to find that an allegation was without merit."
In the posting Frank mentions that the WSJ was recently investigated for claims of bribery. However, that case was dismissed and not pursued by the US government.
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