Our country was the victim of a hacking attack that led to ‘fake news’, says Saif Ahmed Al Thani, director of Qatar’s Government Communications Office

Your article (Saudi Arabia and UAE block Qatari media over incendiary statements, 25 May) lends credence to the idea that fraudulent “quotes” – falsely attributed to the emir of Qatar and Qatar’s foreign minister – placed by hackers on a Qatari website might actually be genuine. They are not.

Allow us set the record straight: the government of Qatar noticed the appearance of “hacked” material on the Qatar News Agency’s website at 12.15am on Wednesday 24 May. Qatar’s Government Communications Office released a statement at 1am alerting the news media that the quotes were not authentic. Most media outlets covered our statement and stopped publishing or broadcasting the fraudulent material.

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