SHANGHAI - Chinese search engine giant Baidu - often described as the country's equivalent of Google - said Monday it has has launched anti-corruption investigations into its own employees after reports three department heads were being probed.
Baidu did not reveal any details of its inquiries, nor confirm how many were being investigated or their names.
"Internal anti-corruption action creates a just and transparent working environment, and a sound environment for workers' development," the company said in a statement to AFP.
"We call on all employees to respect company ethics and national laws, to create a healthy and just working environment." Chinese Internet portal Sina reported Monday that Baidu was investigating three departmental directors.
President Xi Jinping launched a much-publicised drive against corruption after he came to power two years ago, vowing to target both high-level "tigers" and low-ranking "flies".
But rather than the Communist party's feared internal watchdog, the Central Commission for Discipline and Investigation, Baidu's anti-corruption investigations were conducted by its own "ethics and morality construction" department, reports said.
Baidu fired five executives last November for bribery and illicit appropriation and dismissed four of its employees for bribery in August 2012, according to media reports.