"Unfortunately, [this inquiry] proves [the ICC] is part of the problem and not part of the solution," Netanyahu said in a statement.
The ICC's decision came, Netanyahu said, "because we defend our citizens from Hamas, a terrorist organization allied with the Palestinian Authority."
"Hamas war criminals fired thousands of rockets at Israeli citizens," he said.
Earlier Friday, ICC Chief Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda announced that she had opened a preliminary investigation into the "situation in Palestine" after the Palestinian government formally accused Israel of war crimes.
"It is absolutely scandalous that, just days after terrorists butchered Jews in France, the general prosecutor is beginning an inquiry against the state of the Jews," Netanyahu said in reference to Israel.
The ICC move comes a few weeks after the Palestinian Authority asked the Hague-based court to investigate war crimes committed by Israel during the latter's seven-week onslaught on the Gaza Strip last summer.
More than 2,160 Palestinians were killed – and some 11,000 others injured – during 51 days of relentless Israeli bombardment of the blockaded coastal enclave last July and August.
Israel claims its offensive was intended to halt rocket fire from the Gaza Strip, which continues to groan under an eight-year-old Israeli blockade.
The offensive ended on August 26 with a ceasefire signed in Cairo between Israel and Palestinian resistance factions.