Fake News? Former New Zealand Prime Minister Denies Investing in Bitcoin

Former New Zealand Prime Minister John Key said he did not advise people to invest in bitcoin, as was stated in a post pretending to be the NZ Herald.

Dec 12, 2017 at 10:20 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 13, 2021 at 7:15 a.m. UTC

A former prime minister of New Zealand is crying "fake news" after false reports circulating on Facebook suggested he had invested in bitcoin.

, a fictitious news website – which itself bore the New Zealand Herald logo – purported that John Key, who served as prime minister from 2008 to 2016. The page, which was reportedly circulated on Facebook in the wake of its release, purported that Key was claiming a $300 million windfall from an initial investment of $1,000.

Key, who is currently the chairman of ANZ Bank New Zealand, is crying foul, stating that he never invested in or endorsed bitcoin.

The webpage in question, linked below, included a photo of Key as well as a quote attributed to him.

Key told the real Herald that he has asked Facebook to remove the post to prevent it from being shared further. So far, Facebook has not moved to remove the content.

He told the newspaper:

“This is outrageous. People are at risk here and you'd think Facebook would take their responsibilities seriously.”

The report in question is titled “Bitcoin is about to surge and make thousands of new millionaires: how you can turn $50 into a fortune!” and claims that investors in bitcoin can claim “legal tax-free cash” in the nation.

Key told the Herald he received messages thanking him for the advice and saying that people invested in the world’s largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization because of it.

The New Zealand Herald also disclosed that it, too, is moving to have the page removed, given that it represents a false version of its website.

John Key image via Wikimedia Commons

The Festival for the Decentralized World
Thursday - Sunday, June 9-12, 2022
Austin, Texas
Save a Seat Now

DISCLOSURE

Please note that our privacy policy, terms of use, cookies, and do not sell my personal information has been updated.

The leader in news and information on cryptocurrency, digital assets and the future of money, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups. As part of their compensation, certain CoinDesk employees, including editorial employees, may receive exposure to DCG equity in the form of stock appreciation rights, which vest over a multi-year period. CoinDesk journalists are not allowed to purchase stock outright in DCG.

Trending

1
First Mover Asia: USDC Hasn’t ‘Flippened’ USDT, but Trader Preferences Are Changing; Cryptos Rise Despite Bearishness

A Glassnode analyst suggests the collapse of the UST token has triggered a change in investors' stablecoin preferences; bitcoin holds above $30,000.

A Glassnode analyst suggests the collapse of the UST token has triggered a change in investors' stablecoin preferences; bitcoin holds above $30,000.

2
Musk Sets New Condition for Twitter, Citi Says Terra’s Fallout Unlikely to Hit Wider Financial System

The most valuable crypto stories for Tuesday, May 17, 2022.

The most valuable crypto stories for Tuesday, May 17, 2022.

3
Market Wrap: Cryptos and Stocks Mixed Amid Bearish Sentiment

BTC is stabilizing around $30K while stock market volatility begins to fade.

BTC is stabilizing around $30K while stock market volatility begins to fade.

4
New Data Shows Underground Bitcoin Mining Thriving in China

The U.S. has also expanded its lead in the global hashrate competition.

The U.S. has also expanded its lead in the global hashrate competition.