Fake Tweet Saying White House Bombed and Obama Injured Hits Stock Market

Should dealers and traders monitor Twitter? Today a fake tweet was posted saying the the White House had been bombed and that president Obama injured.

The Tweet appeared on the Associated Press Twitter page first, which read “Breaking: Two Explosions in the White House and Barack Obama is injured“.

According to CNet.com, the Associated Press Twitter feed was hacked. However, it is important note that in truth, it may just be a case that the password was guessed after many automated attempts, and no actual “hacking” took place. Although we have not been able to confirm this yet. What we do know is that the main @AP Twitter account is current suspended, probably while Twitter admins reset all the passwords and clean out any false Tweets.

AP Twitter Page Hacked

The Anonymous group posted their own Tweet of the news:

White House bombed on Twitter

Of course, the nature of Twitter is that such “news” was quickly re-tweeted (the Anonymous Tweet had been re-tweeted 582 times by 8.30pm on 23rd April 2013)  and many people beleived that this to be true. The result was stock market panic and traders started dumping stocks, fearing a repeat of the market collapse that followed the 11th September 2001 attacks in America.

Both @kingsthings (Larry King) and @NewsBreaker announced “HACKED: Face tweet about explosions at White House & injured #Obama sends stock market plummeting

Newsbreaker site update: BREAKING: Stocks Freefall After False Reports of Explosions at White House, President Injured

The Wall Street Journal reported the stock market dive;

DJ30 Industrials drops 100 points after fake Tweet

DJ30 Industrials drops 100 points after fake Tweet

It is amazing how quickly the mainstream media and blogs picked up this news and published. Just to reiterate – this was made up, it did not happen. There have been no attacks on the White House. Stop dumping your stocks and shares, stop panicking, carry on.

Of course, one question that may remain unanswered – did the hackers predict the fall in the stock market, and did they capitalise on it by purchasing falling stocks and then selling once they recovered again later in the day?

 

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