Newsletters
Business News for Technology Decision-Makers NewsFactor Sites:       NewsFactor.com     Enterprise Security Today     CRM Daily     Business Report     Sci-Tech Today  
   
This ad will display for the next 20 seconds. Please click for more information, or scroll down to pass the ad, or Close Ad.
Home Business Briefing Mobile Industry News Small Business Tech Trends More Topics...
APC Free White Paper
Optimize your network investment &
Enter to win a Samsung Galaxy Note

www.apc.com
Business Briefing
24/7/365 Network Uptime
Average Rating:
Rate this article:  
Scammer Faked News of Google Buying ICOA for $400M
Scammer Faked News of Google Buying ICOA for $400M

By Jennifer LeClaire
November 26, 2012 12:08PM

Bookmark and Share
"We are investigating the source, so far it originated from Aruba," said ICOA CEO George Strouthopoulos of the hoax about Google buying his company. "This is not true. Never had any discussions with any potential acquirers! This is absolutely false! Someone, I guess a stock promoter with a dubious interest, is disseminating wrong, false and misleading info."
 



Stock in wireless hotspot provider ICOA quintupled when news reports began circulating Monday morning that Google had acquired it for $400 million. The only problem was the report was a hoax.

A Google spokesperson told us the company had not acquired ICOA for any amount and ICOA's chairman and CEO also told us directly that news of the acquisition was "absolutely false."

PR Web, a widely used press-release distribution service, had distributed a release announcing the acquisition. A representative at PR Web could not immediately be reached for comment, although a recorded message instructs callers to contact companies mentioned in press releases about any questions related to a release.

A Flurry of Reports

Based on the hoax press release, news media quickly began reporting the acquisition as fact. ZDNet was among the first to report the story. Forbes also reported on the "acquisition" and GigaOM offered reasons why Google would acquire the company. The Associated Press moved a story, then later retracted it.

PC Magazine offered a statement from Google taken from the news release, reporting "Google said it made the acquisition to 'further diversify its already impressive portfolio of companies.' The Web giant did not elaborate about its motivation for the deal."

ICOA, a penny stock trading over the counter, spiked to quintuple its value, trading at 5 cents a share before the acquisition was denied.

The Truth Comes Out

George Strouthopoulos, chairman and CEO of ICOA, told us the press release was a hoax.

"We are investigating the source, so far it originated from Aruba," Strouthopoulos said. "This is not true. Never had any discussions with any potential acquirers! This is absolutely false!"

"Someone, I guess a stock promoter with a dubious interest, is disseminating wrong, false and misleading info in the PR circles. ICOA will report this to the proper authorities."

Who Is ICOA?

ICOA, Inc. (www.icoacorp.com) is based in Warwick, Rhode Island. The company's website says that as of 2006, it owned or operated broadband access installations in high-traffic locations like airports and hotels across 45 states, also providing back-office solutions for hotspot operators and wireless service providers.

However, the most recent press release on ICOA's site was from December 2010, indicating the company has not been very active in recent years, at least on the PR front. Thus, it's rather ironic that a bogus press release would put the company at the top of today's tech and business news.

Questions still remain at this hour as to who issued the phony news release and whether it was done intentionally to manipulate the near-zero price of the company's stock.
 

Tell Us What You Think
Comment:

Name:



APC has an established a reputation for solid products that virtually pay for themselves upon installation. Who has time to spend worrying about system downtime? APC makes it easy for you to focus on business growth instead of business downtime with reliable data center systems and IT solutions. Learn more here.


 Business Briefing
1.   Google, Rockstar Suit Stays in Calif.
2.   Google Earnings, Sales Disappoint
3.   Profit and Revenue Slip for IBM
4.   Zynga Launches Mobile FarmVille
5.   Tech Giant Alibaba Plans U.S. IPO


advertisement
Is Zuckerberg Nuts To Buy Oculus VR?
$2 billion deal for unproven company.
Average Rating:
Google, Rockstar Suit Stays in Calif.
Judge not fooled by Apple's tricks.
Average Rating:
Google Earnings, Sales Disappoint
Amid persistent downturn in ad prices.
Average Rating:


advertisement
Product Information and Resources for Technology You Can Use To Boost Your Business

Network Security Spotlight
Michaels Says Nearly 3M Credit, Debit Cards Breached
Arts and crafts retail giant Michaels Stores has confirmed that a data breach at its POS terminals from May 2013 to Jan. 2014 may have exposed nearly 3 million customer credit and debit cards.
 
Heartbleed Could Cost Millions, Could Have Been Prevented
Early estimates of Heartbleed’s cost to enterprises are running in the millions. The reason: revoking all the SSL certificates the bug leaked will come at a very hefty price.
 
Google's Street View Software Unravels CAPTCHAs
The latest software Google uses for its Street View cars to read street numbers in images for Google Maps works so well that it also solves CAPTCHAs, those puzzles designed to defeat bots.
 

Enterprise Hardware Spotlight
Vaio Fit 11A Battery Danger Forces Recall by Sony
Using a Sony Vaio Fit 11A laptop? It's time to send it back to Sony. In fact, Sony is encouraging people to stop using the laptop after several reports of its Panasonic battery overheating.
 
Continued Drop in Global PC Shipments Slows
Worldwide shipments of PCs fell during the first three months of the year, but the global slump in PC demand may be easing, with a considerable slowdown from last year's drops.
 
Google Glass Finds a Home in Medical Education, Practice
Google Glass may find its first markets in verticals in which hands-free access to data is a boon. Medicine is among the most prominent of those, as seen in a number of Glass experiments under way.
 

Mobile Technology Spotlight
Google Releases Chrome Remote Desktop App for Android
You're out on a sales call, and use your Android mobile device to grab a file you have back at the office on your desktop. That's a bit easier now with Google's Chrome Remote Desktop app for Android.
 
Amazon 3D Smartphone Pics Leaked
E-commerce giant Amazon is reportedly set to launch a smartphone after years of development. Photos of the phone, which may feature a unique 3D interface, were leaked by tech pub BGR.
 
Zebra Tech Buys Motorola Enterprise for $3.45B
Weeks after Lenovo bought Motorola Mobility’s assets from Google for $2.91 billion, Zebra Technologies is throwing down $3.45 billion for Motorola’s Enterprise business in an all-cash deal.
 

Navigation
NewsFactor Business
Home/Top News | Business Briefing | Mobile Industry News | Small Business | Tech Trends | Business Intelligence | Sales & Marketing | Innovation
E-Commerce | CIO Issues | Press Releases
NewsFactor Network Enterprise I.T. Sites
NewsFactor Technology News | Enterprise Security Today | CRM Daily

NewsFactor Business and Innovation Sites
Sci-Tech Today | NewsFactor Business Report

NewsFactor Services
FreeNewsFeed | Free Newsletters | XML/RSS Feed

About NewsFactor Network | How To Contact Us | Article Reprints | Careers @ NewsFactor | Services for PR Pros | Top Tech Wire | How To Advertise

Privacy Policy | Terms of Service
© Copyright 2000-2014 NewsFactor Network. All rights reserved. Article rating technology by Blogowogo. Member of Accuserve Ad Network.