EU officials have raided Intel's offices in Germany as well as some retailers, which sell products using the company's chips.

The computing giant may be facing a huge European Union antitrust, or competitions, inquiry after the raid for evidence.

According to CNN, the European Commission staff were looking for evidence of broken anti-cartel rules.

The news network added that the EU authorities had said the surprise inspections were a first step in its investigation - indicating it may be considering charges.

It said there was no strict deadline for deciding whether to file charges or drop the case.

Intel spokesman Chuck Molloy confirmed that the company's Munich office in Germany had been raided and gave the standard response that the company would cooperate closely with the investigation.

Europe's largest consumer electronics retailer, Germany-based Media Markt, confirmed that it was also raided.

The chipmaker was charged with monopoly abuse last summer after the EU decreed that it had undercut smaller rival Advanced Micro Devices Inc by offering "substantial" customer rebates to computer makers for buying most of their x86 central processing units, or CPUs, from Intel.

The EU executive also said Intel made payments to manufacturers to get them to delay or cancel product lines using AMD chips and that it sold its own chips below average cost to strategic server customers - such as governments and universities - when bidding against AMD-based products, explains CNN.

The details of what has prompted this latest raid have not been released but, should Intel be found guilty again, it could face fines of up to 10% of its yearly global revenue.

Last year, Intel's revenue amounted to $6.98 billion.