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Banksy sold a fake NFT for over $300,000

The website of street artist Banksy temporarily guided users to an auction where it was selling a work of digital art for more than $300,000. The problem was that it wasn’t authentic.

On Tuesday, a web page placed on Banksy’s website showed an avatar similar to one of the numerous popular NFT collectibles identified as CryptoPunks.

Non-fungible tokens, also called NFTs, are individual crypto tokens designed to symbolize purchasing a rare digital item, such as art. This year, sales of such digital assets started to surge to record highs after the rising interest in collectible items and crypto.

People can also perceive an NFT as a digital declaration of ownership. Buyers of the tokens get a certificate of authenticity which proves that they own the original item. However, that doesn’t give them copyright, which means other internet users can still view the item for free.

On Tuesday, people clicking on the Banksy NFT web page found themselves to a link for an auction. The page showed up on Banksy’s site in the morning and later disappeared. Some people say that it might be a hack. The listing on the OpenSea marketplace finished with the NFT selling for around $336,000 worth of 100 ethereum tokens.

Inauthentic

Banksy’s agency confirmed the graffiti artist did not create the NFT but did not clarify that the website experienced a hack attack or not.

On Tuesday, in an emailed statement, Pest Control told CNBC that The artist did not create any NFT artworks. 

In a strange situation, an anonymous person using a Pranksy username returned the money to the buyer.

Later on Tuesday, Pranksy tweeted that his ETH purchase was just returned to him.

As an additional comment, there was a note saying that the future relationship with Banksy seems suspicious and contains high risk.

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