News that US retail giant Walmart had suddenly announced it would be accepting Litecoin from next month has been uncovered as a hoax.
Media outlets had been sent a fake email – complete with enthusiastic quotes from Walmart CEO Doug McMillon and Litecoin mastermind Charlie Lee – explaining how the world’s largest grocer would operate with cryptocurrency.
Suspicions arose, however, when the domain address behind the emails appeared to lead to nowhere, and was only registered in August. The fake release was also lacking any backlinks to either Walmart or Litecoin.
The Litecoin Foundation has yet to comment about the hoax, but Walmart confirmed it was fake only minutes ago.
Alarmingly, the price of Litecoin rocketed by almost 40 per cent as the ‘news’ spread, touching $237 from $173.
The massive spike caused by the fake news points to a well-planned scam that hoped to plug into a news narrative artificially raising the price of a cryptocurrency.