Britney Spears is alive, despite a hoax reporting her death on Monday.
Sony Music’s Twitter account, which was apparently hacked, posted two tweets claiming Spears had died, “RIP @britneyspears #RIPBritney 1981-2016” and “Britney spears is dead by accident! We will tell you more soon #RIPBritney.”
The tweets have since been deleted.
Spears’ rep was quick to tell CNN that the pop star was alive.
“I assume their account has been hacked,” Spears’ manager, Adam Leber, told CNN. “I haven’t spoken to anyone… as of yet but I am certain their account was hacked. Britney is fine and well. There have been a few Internet clowns over the years who have made similar claims about her death, but never from the official Sony Music Twitter account.”
Sony Music’s Global Head of Communications, Liz Young told CNN repeatedly she had “no comment.”
The official Twitter account of Bob Dylan may also have been affected by a hack. It tweeted “Rest in peace @britneyspears” at around the same time as the tweets from the Sony account.
At least one media outlet rushed to post the “news” before finding out whether it was really true. Mirror Online, in the United Kingdom, published an article that began, “Britney Spears is dead, according to Sony Music,” before noting near the bottom, “However, it does seem the Sony Twitter account has been hacked.” The article was later updated to make clear that the story was a hoax.
Tweets from the Sony account appeared to suggest a connection with OurMine, a group that has previously been connected to hacks of Twitter accounts of other prominent people and organizations. OurMine claims that they are not hackers but a security group checking accounts to see if they are secure.
CNN’s Cheri Mossburg and AnneClaire Stapleton contributed reporting.