The Five Dumbest Things on Wall Street This Week: Feb. 22
5. Burger King's Whopper
Poor Burger King(BKW) . Just when the hamburger seller finally goes on a roll, it gets hit with a whopper of a cyber attack.
The fast-food giant was forced to suspend its Twitter account for a short period Monday after it was hacked by a still-unknown entity. The hacker cheekily changed the profile picture to a McDonald's(MCD) logo and began posting obscene messages before the account was ultimately taken down. The childish prank was a far cry from the company's victory last Friday, when it reported Street-beating fourth-quarter results that sent its stock price up more than 6%.
Burger King generally tweets several times a week to promote sales on its products, such as its chicken sandwiches. However, it quickly became clear this was no ordinary game of chicken early Monday afternoon when someone tweeted via Burger King's account: "We just got sold to McDonald's!"
Following that opening salvo of idiocy, the account was overrun by numbskulls determined to tweet and retweet as much stupidity as possible. The account even went so far as to tweet: "if I catch you at a wendys, we're fightin!"
Come on, guys! Cut it out. We don't mind you breaking into the Pentagon's hard drives to steal defense secrets or launch a global thermonuclear war. Heck, we learned this week that the Chinese military is doing that every day. But for the good of the country, leave our beloved burger dealers alone!
"We apologize to our loyal fans and followers, whom might have received unauthorized tweets from our account. We are pleased to announce that the account is now active again," Burger King spokesman Bryson Thornton said in a statement once the account was recaptured by the company.
Offline, one big reason for Burger King's recent resurgence is the addition of new menu items like its chicken parmesan sandwich, Cinnabon Minibon rolls and sweet potato fries. Burger King is also getting competitive in the coffee arena, a space that helped jump-start moribund McDonald's sales not too long ago.
Nevertheless, despite Burger King's attempts to copy its strategy, McDonald's vehemently denied having anything to do with Monday's computer piracy, tweeting "Rest assured, we had nothing to do with the hacking."
Fine. We believe you.