Gensler’s ‘Compromised’ Bitcoin ETF Tweet Inscribed as an Ordinals NFT

Gensler’s ‘Compromised’ Bitcoin ETF Tweet Inscribed as an Ordinals NFT

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It was the fake tweet heard ‘round the world. And now it’s been immortalized on the Bitcoin blockchain.

After U.S. Securities and Exchange Commissioner Gary Gensler confirmed that the Twitter account of the regulatory agency was compromised and used to falsely announce the approval of a spot Bitcoin ETF, someone archived Gensler’s response in an Ordinals Inscription.

“Just so we don’t forget, this tweet has been immortalized on Bitcoin forever,” digital artist Billy Restey tweeted.

just so we don’t forget..

this tweet has been immortalized on Bitcoin forever..

→ https://t.co/ipV76F9gCO pic.twitter.com/RcypVCkKQO

— billy (@billyrestey) January 9, 2024

On Tuesday, the official SEC Twitter account announced that all thirteen spot Bitcoin ETFs had been approved when, in fact, none had been approved. The subsequent revelation that the tweet was fake sent the price of Bitcoin plunging from $47,680 to just above $45,500.

Over 53 million Ordinals inscriptions have been created since the protocol was introduced last January, with the Gensler tweet attributed to Restey being inscription 53,995,422.

Restey has not yet responded to Decrypt’s request for comment.

Ordinal inscriptions are often compared to Ethereum-based NFTs for the Bitcoin blockchain. Thanks to updates in the Bitcoin protocol like Taproot, enthusiasts have minted everything from images and text to video games like the original Doom. On Monday, Ninjalerts announced that a Super Nintendo Entertainment System emulator was inscribed on the Bitcoin blockchain.

While some speculate that an SEC “intern” sent the tweet by mistake, an agency spokesperson told Decrypt the tweet was not made by the SEC or its staff.

The fake tweet comes at a time when the financial world waits with bated breath to see if the SEC finally approves a spot Bitcoin ETF. Over 13 Bitcoin ETFs proposals—including from BlackRock, Fidelity, Bitwise, and VanEck—are waiting for the green light to trade.

VanEck CEO Jan van Eck suggests that Bitcoin ETF trading could start as early as Thursday.

After the hack, the SEC chair took to Twitter to remind investors about the importance of securing their accounts.

This is a reminder to secure your financial accounts as well as protect against identity theft and fraud.

Remember to:
🔒Use strong passphrases or passwords
🔒Set up multifactor authentication
🔒Keep account alerts turned on#CybersecurityAwarenessMonthhttps://t.co/qitGkujLxD

— Gary Gensler (@GaryGensler) October 24, 2023

Gensler’s tweet on Tuesday echoed a post on Monday that warned investors about the risk of scams in cryptocurrency.

“Fraudsters continue to exploit the rising popularity of crypto assets to lure retail investors into scams,” the SEC chair said at the time, highlighting scams targeting cryptocurrency investors, including pyramid and Ponzi schemes, and theft targeting wallets.

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