April 23rd, 2013
01:56 PM ET
10 years ago

A false tweet heard around the web

(CNN) – A tweet by the nation’s largest newswire about a catastrophe at the White House was nearly immediately shot down as false on Tuesday.

The Associated Press message read, "Breaking: Two Explosions in the White House and Barack Obama is injured."

The group Syrian Electronic Army, behind previous hacks of the BBC and CBS News, claimed responsibility for the false message on its website.

While some took the post seriously, other Twitter users seemed to recognize the message as false almost immediately. The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped sharply on the news however, though quickly regained its losses when the report was deemed false.

At the daily White House briefing, Press Secretary Jay Carney noted the president was fine.

"I was just with him," Carney added.

The AP's White House Correspondent Julie Pace also noted the tweet was the result of a hacked account.

"It appears as though AP's Twitter account has been hacked, so anything that was just sent out about any incident at the White House is obviously false," she said.

The official AP Twitter account, @AP, was listed as "suspended" on the social media site soon after the erroneous Tweet was sent.

Multiple news organizations and reporters have dealt with hackers on Twitter in the past, including CBS News earlier this week.

Filed under: President Obama • Twitter
soundoff (99 Responses)

    Everything has a limit. This kind of hatred has gone over and above the limit. Anyone who has shown his hatred, should be ready to face the music. We can't continue with this kind of behaviour.

    April 23, 2013 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  2. Bassmaster22

    Amazing that anyone considers the AP or any other US based news agency as credible. Absolutely astounding.

    April 23, 2013 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  3. NN

    Why would the WH try to cover up the two explosions and injury to the President??? This needs to be looked at more closely.

    April 23, 2013 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  4. Tony

    Truth, you will not know truth if it hits you in the head.

    April 23, 2013 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  5. just sayin

    people still take associated propaganda seriously??? hahahaha.... too funny!

    April 23, 2013 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  6. bobbyb

    The only thing that stops a hacker with a gun is an idiot with a gun.

    April 23, 2013 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  7. Romney is Still NOT My Hero

    HAHA! Good thing it was a hoax. And just when Boehner was breaking open another bottle of Jack (this time to party with and not the usual routine). May God continue to protect you and your family, President Obama.

    April 23, 2013 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  8. Robert Camacho

    I am glad that both the President and The White House are good.

    This is a very sick act and hope the Secret Service catches this loosers!

    God Bless America.

    April 23, 2013 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  9. buongiorno

    what an embarressment to be a American

    April 23, 2013 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  10. The Real Tom Paine

    -just sayin

    people still take associated propaganda seriously??? hahahaha.... too funny!
    So sayeth the one who recites Uncle Rupert's propaganda without any criticism? Hahaha ....too funny!

    April 23, 2013 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  11. Anonymous


    April 23, 2013 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  12. wrm

    haha, too funny.

    April 23, 2013 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  13. stating the obvious

    what an embarressment to be a American
    yes... it's been a long 4.5 years and 3.5 to go. hang in there.

    April 23, 2013 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  14. ThinkAgain


    "The group Syrian Electronic Army, behind previous hacks of the BBC and CBS News, claimed responsibility for the false message on its website."

    April 23, 2013 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  15. Guy

    From what I saw there was a brief "flash crash" when the Dow dropped 100 points and then quickly recovered when the report was shown to be false. There really was not too much difference between this hoax and some of the shoddy reporting CNN did last week.

    April 23, 2013 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  16. ThinkAgain

    @Dumbo: "So why hasn't Obama come out to say he's okay instead of Jay Carney. I smell a cover up. They must have messed up their false flag operation."

    And if President Obama HAD come out, you'd be complaining he was wasting his time dealing with the press ...

    April 23, 2013 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  17. ThinkAgain

    @Uri Nation: "I wonder how much money the hackers made in that 5 minute timeframe?"

    Excellent observation, given how reactive the markets are ... it'd be interesting to see whether the hackers were employed by a big Wall Street firm ...

    April 23, 2013 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  18. craig

    Back during the height of the financial crisis I remember a Wall Street guy claiming that the problem was all with little investors, and he explained that "Wall Street is all about logic, and little investors were too emotional." It wasn't true then, and it isn't true now. Somebody hiccups and the DOW heads for the basement on one unsubstantiated tweet. Yeah, if that's what passes for logic on Wall Street, no wonder the whole country is struggling to recover.

    April 23, 2013 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  19. a disgrace

    obama's face is really starting to show the effects of all those late night celebrity parties at the white house! time for taxpayers to send him to walmart for a discount face lift!

    April 23, 2013 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  20. ThinkAgain

    @Solomon Walker: "I firmly believe that this ridiculousness is being solicited from the White House staff to distract from other matters, as a matter of politics."

    And I firmly believe that folks like you who post here need help in the morning to get dressed.

    April 23, 2013 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  21. ThinkAgain

    @JD: "quick question as I genuinely do not know, but why would the DOW Jones drop just on speculative information that there was an explosion in the white house? Then to find out it's false...whooop, DOW Jones goes back up...."

    It's called "high-frequency" or "flash trading". Computer algorithms react within microseconds to conduct trades, making the market subject to "flash crashes" in reaction to news such as this.

    What we really ought to be focusing on is putting a nominal per-trade tax on all these algorithmic trades. Think of the revenue!

    April 23, 2013 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  22. Sniffit

    Apparently, CNN doesn't like people pointing out that all the"he was golfing" and other nonense is easly via Obama's online daily itinerary, which shows he was at the WH all godd-mn day doing what POTUSes do....meetings, briefings, etc.

    April 23, 2013 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  23. rs

    george bush did it. why stop now lefties?
    GWB doesn't know how to use the intertubes much less tweet.

    April 23, 2013 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  24. shan22044

    Reminds me of Live Free or Die Hard. Where everyone thought the Capitol was blown up until they ran outside and saw it still standing.

    April 23, 2013 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  25. Sniffit

    "I guess it fits in with your "liberals have never worked a day in their lives" narrative that helps keep your anger stoked,"

    That's not it. You and I both know what it is. It's all about "them" being lazy to these guys.

    April 23, 2013 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
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