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Microsoft offices in China raided over monopoly allegations

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Four of Microsoft’s offices in China were raided yesterday as part of an anti-monopoly investigation. China's State Administration for Industry and Commerce (SAIC) has revealed that around 100 officials made unannounced visits to Microsoft’s offices in China, seeking information on Microsoft’s security features and the way it bundles software. Microsoft was quick to issue a statement yesterday when news of the raids broke, noting that the software maker would "actively cooperate" with the government.

China’s investigation appears to have been prompted by complaints from rival companies over the past year about compatibility issues with some of Microsoft’s Windows and Office software. Officials have spoken to senior Microsoft employees and copied data, contracts, and financial reports as part of the raids. China’s move to investigate Microsoft follows recent pressure on US technology companies from the Chinese government over security concerns related to NSA spying. China has also banned Microsoft's new Windows 8 operating system from government computers, catching the American technology company by surprise. News of the raids also comes just weeks before the Xbox One becomes the first gaming console to be released in mainland China since a government ban on console sales in 2000.