Japan issues uncommon caution due to the fake Elon Musk “X” account.

Japan’s Ministry of Finance has urged “X,” previously recognised as Twitter, to remove a fraudulent account that was posing as Masato Kanda, the top currency diplomat. The ministry took the unusual step of communicating in English on the social media platform, requesting that users not engage with the impersonation account. Masato Kanda holds a significant role in Japan’s pursuit to stabilise the yen’s value, being a key influencer in the world’s third-largest economy.

The counterfeit account has since been taken down. Kanda wields substantial influence among Japan’s monetary policymakers, as his statements can sway the yen’s valuation against other major currencies. Although the account, followed by approximately 550 users, had refrained from discussing the yen or financial markets, it posted five times, with the most recent attempt mimicking Kanda’s recent trip to Ukraine.

The finance ministry confirmed the fake account’s existence and formally asked X (formerly Twitter) to suspend it. A subsequent notice on X indicated the account’s suspension due to a “Twitter Rules” violation. Historically, the yen has been considered a safe-haven asset, typically sought by investors during times of crisis.

However, the yen has recently depreciated against the US dollar due to Japan’s central bank maintaining a negative main interest rate, unlike other central banks that have raised rates considerably. Higher interest rates generally enhance a currency’s appeal to investors, leading to decreased demand for currencies with lower rates and causing their value to decline.

In the previous week, the “Bank of Japan” opted to keep interest rates at extremely low levels but expressed willingness to allow more flexible rate increases. Nevertheless, the yen’s value weakened, reaching 143.89 against the dollar, marking its lowest level in over a month.

The incident involving the impersonation account highlights the susceptibility of prominent figures to online identity theft and underscores the ongoing challenges posed by fraudulent activities on social media platforms.






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