We only see this in cryptos. Yesterday afternoon, information began to circulate concerning a « partnership »Between Litecoin and Amazon. Customers of the American distribution giant will be able to pay in LTC. The price of crypto surges and pulls the market higher. There is just one problem: it is a fake. Well prepared, certainly, but which should have been detected by media obsessed with the scoop.
Fake news that will cost many traders dearly
The media that relay unverified information, this happens all too often. It is all the more unfortunate when it has financial consequences, as was the case with this hoax Litecoin. While the operation required careful preparation, the idea was simple. The authors started by reserving a bogus domain name, walmart-corp.com, in order to have an e-mail address associated with the American giant. They then issued a press release on behalf of Amazon Inc. on GlobeNewsWire.com. This site apparently hasn’t verified much at the time of press release validation, which is pretty shocking.
Then, almost all the media fell into the trap. In addition to traditional crypto media, Yahoo, Reuters and CNBC began to relay information. The Litecoin Foundation also did this on its Twitter account, despite the fact that Charlie Lee was quoted. The price of LTC soared within minutes. It’s people like you and me who sniffed out the scam. When I saw the press release on Telegram, my immediate reaction was: ” How can you enter into a partnership with a decentralized cryptocurrency “. It didn’t make sense, a headline “Walmart to Add LTC to Payment Methods” would have made a little more sense. The choice of Litecoin is also curious, usually companies start with Bitcoin.
Litecoin Walmat: how the rose pot was discovered
Then, the domain of the email address that does not match the official Walmart website should have caught the media’s ears. In one of my Telegram groups, a member immediately noted that the domain walmart-corp.com had been booked recently. At this point, the scam is almost established. But the articles continue to be published (notably Reuters), as the sources at the base of the information realize they have been duped and begin to delete their contents. Unfortunately, it is too late, the authors have probably already sold their LTCs or closed their long leveraged positions to go short. The pump & dump is a success.
Getting informed becomes a real challenge
This episode shows how harder and harder it is to stay informed. Of course, if we want to validate preconceived opinions, there are media adapted to each of them. But when you’re just interested in the truth, it’s very complicated. Given the biased nature of the majority of the media, it is necessary to constantly check and cross-check information. Otherwise we risk being cheated too.
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