A fake news release suggesting that Walmart had plans to accept Litecoin as payment was sent out by GlobeNewswire. It quickly circulated among various news outlets including Reuters and CNBC.
During an interview this afternoon, Litecoin creator Charlie Lee said that he was initially taken in by the fake news. Lee told Bloomberg reporter Emily Chang:
“I was like, wow, that’s awesome…and it turned out to be fake.”
In the same interview he explained that GlobeNewswire is working with authorities to investigate the incident and who submitted the false report. GlobeNewswire also intends to implement stronger authentication for those who submit press releases in the future.
According to Lee his project has little role to play in the investigation. “In terms of us as the Litecoin Foundation, there’s not much we can do,” he said, adding that fake news is often spread, both in the crypto industry and the world of traditional stock trading.
No benefit for Litecoin Foundation
According to Lee, the fake news did not come from an individual involved in the Litecoin Foundation.
“It’s definitely not anyone on our end…so I’m going to deny it.”
He also said that Litecoin Foundation did not benefit from the price surge that followed the press release. Lee revealed that he only holds about 20 LTC ($3500) personally.
“This means I have no incentive to do something like this.”
Litecoin is a decentralized project, meaning that anyone may have had the motive to submit fake news, he pointed out.
However, Lee took responsibility for Litecoin’s social media accounts, one of which accidentally shared the news today. He said that the Litecoin Foundation has better understanding now how influential its Twitter account is, and that it will better verify news going forward.
“I mean, we try very hard not to tweet fake news, and this time we really screwed up…we will try harder.”
Source: Litecoin Creator on Fake Walmart News: “This Time, We Really Screwed Up” – Fintechs.fi