A fake press release shared by news sites plunged the stock market into a short-lived frenzy before the company involved revealed the truth.
A fake press release plunged the stock market into a short-lived frenzy on Monday when a fake press release linked cryptocurrency Litecoin to supermarket giant Walmart.
The hoax release was sent out early Monday, indicating that Walmart had agreed to a partnership with the cryptocurrency. The hype increased when someone at Litecoin tweeted the press release.
The digital currency has jumped about 30% after the publication of the false claims.
Litecoin went from $ 175 to $ 230 in the moments after the “news” broke on other media.
But Walmart quickly put an end to the absurdity.
In a statement posted on its website, the retailer said, “Walmart has no relationship with Litecoin” and that the company was “the subject of a fake press release.”
A Walmart spokesperson confirmed the information was false.
GlobalNewswire, which published the original fake news, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The site is a rival to Business Wire and PR Newswire, which are well-known places to disseminate information about the company.
According to CNN Business, the “press release seemed legitimate enough.” The site noted that it included fake quotes from Walmart CEO Doug McMillon.
CNN reports that the scam is likely a “pump and dump” that involves people buying an asset and raising the price before selling it once the price “starts to soar”.
“Pumping and dumping systems are generally reserved for less regulated markets, such as penny stocks and cryptocurrencies, where regulators and investors have less knowledge of the markets and less ability to detect activity. criminals, “CNN wrote.
“Although unusual, the forged press release from a company the size of Walmart was not the first of its kind.”
News.com.au previously reported that cryptocurrency experts believe it will overtake traditional finance in Australia as early as 2029 after a new report revealed the country had amassed $ 7 billion in digital coins.
Comparison site Finder released its annual cryptocurrency report with some important revelations, including that 31% of Gen Z Australians (born after 1997) own some form of crypto.
Cryptocurrencies are virtual or digital forms of money that take the form of tokens or “coins” using cryptography, making counterfeiting difficult.
Australians have amassed $ 7 billion in cryptocurrency, with the average investor owning $ 2,078 in assets.
Overall, 17% of Australians own a cryptocurrency, while an additional 13% said they intend to buy it within the next year.
– with NCA NewsWire and AFP