A fake op-ed written by someone masquerading as Bill Keller of New York Times has managed to fool thousands of people including some of New York Time’s own staff writers.
I came to notice the incident via a tweet by security researcher Christopher Soghoian who identified it as a fake New York Times URL. But interestingly, some of New York Time’s own writers such as Nick Bilton was fooled by the article and ended up sharing the story on Twitter. Adding insult to the injury, it looks like Bill Keller himself re-tweeted the fake op-ed. Now I’m not sure if his account was compromised and the tweet was sent by someone other than him. But as you can clearly see from the screenshot below, he retweeted a tweet by @journalismfest with the fake URL.
Bill Keller later tweeted as follows,
THERE IS A FAKE OP-ED GOING AROUND UNDER MY NAME, ABOUT WIKILEAKS. EMPHASIS ON “FAKE.”AS IN, NOT MINE.
Nick Belton has also deleted his tweet and posted a clarification.
The other high profile accounts fooled by the article include WikiLeaks as well, about whom the fake article was about. WikiLeaks later tweeted wondering whether NYT had been hacked whereas in fact it was just a matter of a hoax page.