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Cryptogambling / SEC denies fake Bitcoin ETF approval after ‘unauthorized’ post surfaces

SEC denies fake Bitcoin ETF approval after ‘unauthorized’ post surfaces

Publish Date: 10/01/2024
Stock Photo, tags: sec bitcoin unauthorized - images.unsplash.com

Stock Photo – images.unsplash.com

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) clarified that a post about approving spot Bitcoin exchange-traded funds (ETFs) on X was fake, saying that its account had been breached.

“The @SECGov X account was compromised, and an unauthorized post was posted. The SEC has not approved the listing and trading of spot bitcoin exchange-traded products,” said the agency.

SEC chair Gary Gensler shared the same statement on his official account. Gensler revealed that the SEC has not approved any of the dozen applications from asset managers for Bitcoin ETF.

An SEC spokesperson clarified that the Bitcoin ETFs approval post was not made by the SEC or its staff, according to CoinDesk.

In a later statement, the spokesperson said unauthorized access and activity on the account by an unknown party. However, that party no longer has unauthorized access.

“The SEC will work with law enforcement and our partners across government to investigate the matter and determine appropriate next steps relating to both the unauthorized access and any related misconduct,” the statement said.

In a post, the X safety team said that its team conducted a “preliminary investigation” and found the compromise was not due to a breach in X’s systems. Instead, it was due to an unknown person gaining control over a phone number linked to the @SECGov account through a third party.

The X safety team stressed that the SEC did not enable two-factor authentication when the account was compromised.

CEO of crypto custodian Bitgo Mike Belshe responded to the incident, saying, “Either @secgov was hacked, or @garygensler was hacked, or the SEC just bungled their own announcement. All 3 possibilities are the same – the SEC was responsible for this one.”

At the time of writing, there is no further information about how the SEC’s X accounts became compromised. Aside from this fake news, a false report in October 2023 implied that fund manager BlackRock had received approval for a Bitcoin ETF.

Bitcoin price swings amid false approval

After the fake Bitcoin ETF news surfaced, the price of Bitcoin reportedly surged from $46,730 to nearly $48,000. Subsequently, it dropped to roughly $45,000 following the SEC’s denial of the approvals.

The SEC is anticipated to approve spot Bitcoin ETF applications soon, potentially starting today. Financial giants like BlackRock, Fidelity Investments and Franklin Templeton are among those expecting the green light to offer spot Bitcoin ETFs.

Before the breach, the @SECgov X account had tweeted, “Today the SEC grants approval for #Bitcoin ETFs for listing on all registered national securities exchanges. The approved Bitcoin ETFs will be subject to ongoing surveillance and compliance measures to ensure continued investor protection.”

Experts believe these approvals might encourage investment in Bitcoin, boosting the cryptocurrency industry by injecting billions of dollars into the volatile digital assets market.

Co-founder of Asgard Markets Alex Krüger said that SEC’s breach indicated that bitcoin might not surge as much as bullish investors anticipate when the actual approval news comes out.

“Fake ETF news showed BTC upside is clearly capped until we see actual ETF inflows,” Krüger said in social media post.

An SEC spokesperson revealed to CoinDesk last week that any Bitcoin ETF approvals would be shown in the agency’s EDGAR database.

“Any Commission 19b-4 orders will be posted on our website and then published in the Federal Register,” the spokesperson said.

EDGAR stands for the Electronic Data Gathering, Analysis and Retrieval system. It automatically collects, validates, indexes, accepts and forwards submissions from companies and others mandated by law to file forms with the SEC.

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