Microsoft probed over foreign bribery -report

SEATTLE, March 19 Tue Mar 19, 2013 1:48pm EDT

SEATTLE, March 19 (Reuters) - Microsoft Corp said on Tuesday it takes seriously any allegations of misconduct, after a report that the U.S. Department of Justice is investigating potential bribery by its employees in China, Romania and Italy.

"We take all allegations brought to our attention seriously and we cooperate fully in any government inquiries," a Microsoft spokesman said, without confirming that it was aware of any investigation.

The Wall Street Journal reported earlier on Tuesday that Microsoft was subject of probes by both the Justice Department and U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) over tips from a former Microsoft employee that the company handed kickbacks to foreign government officials in return for software contracts.

The DoJ and SEC declined immediate comment.

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