Just last week, General Mills was affected by a fake press release issued on PRNewswire that said, “Obama Orders Full Investigation of General Mills Supply Chain Following Food Recalls.”
This past Friday, another fake release hit the wires from Business Wire, purporting to be from Javelin Pharmaceuticals, with the headline, “US Supreme Court split – rules in favor of Big Pharma.”
The release was issued after 11p.m. eastern time on Friday evening and was retracted at 7:45a.m. eastern time by Business Wire.
Business Wire SVP, marketing Thomas Becktold told PRNewser in a statement today:
On Friday evening, June 18, Business Wire transmitted a press release for Javelin Pharmaceuticals that we have since learned was fraudulent. The release was not issued or authorized by Javelin Pharmaceuticals. This is a case of stolen identity and is being treated as a criminal investigation
While overall they are a rare occurrence, the recent flow of fake press releases hit at one of the core value propositions the major wire services use when pitching themselves against cheaper or free competitors: trust.
The major services have large, in-house editorial teams who are in place to detect fake or fraudulent information.
UPDATE: After the jump, we’ve posted a release just issued from Business Wire, which states the company will no longer distribute press releases submitted by email.