Microsoft probed over bribery allegations

The Department of Justice (DoJ) and the Securities and Equities Commission (SEC) have initiated allegations that Microsoft, and certain resellers paid money to bureaucrats to win software contracts.

According to the Wall Street Journal today, the inquiries are at an early stage and it’s possible that the accusations may go nowhere.

The allegations relate to payments said to be paid by a former Microsoft China employee. But the authorities are also investigating resellers and partners based in Italy and Romania.

The allegations were made anonymously last year, but it appears that Microsoft initiated an internal investigation, monitored by an independent law firm which concluded there was no case to answer.

The Romanian investigation focuses on resellers allegedly paying officials at the Ministry of Communications. Microsoft Italy is being investigated based on partners who are alleged to have provided jollies and foreign travel to Italian government officials.

Microsoft said that it will cooperate fully with the investigations.