WARNING: Graphic Images.
It was a story that seemed too good to be true.
It had been reported that a Russian man had been rescued by hunting dogs from a bear den from the wilderness of Tuva, deep in Siberia.
There were claims that the bear broke "Alexander's" spine and kept him there for a month, however, he miraculously survived the horrific ordeal by drinking his own urine.
The incredible story of a "Russian mummy saved by hunting dogs" was published around the world, with shocking photos and images showing the man with dry blood and dirt encrusting his body while in hospital.
However, it turns out the unbelievable story ended up being not true, The Independent reports.
UK media picked up the story from a well-known syndication service, which sources its material from Russian tabloids.
News about Siberian cannibals, mass murderers, baby killers, sadist gynaecologists, grandmas killed in bloody sex games all get sent by the trusted syndication — which is why the "Russian mummy" story didn't seem so far-fetched.
However, the syndication sources a story from a Russian tabloid, EADaily, which itself forgot to fact check the story as it was too clickable to pass.
Alexei Demin, editor of EADaily, told The Independent that he had received the video of the man from a single local source, who had, in turn, received the video from his "hunter friends via social media".
He added his website was waiting for additional details, two days after publication.
EADaily was most likely happy with the success of the article, with it being the most popular story on the site, with more than 300,000 views.
However, the same video and photos had gone viral a week earlier — with an amazing story of a man, also called "Alexander", who funnily enough survived the unsurvivable after he emerged from underground in a cemetery at the Black Sea resort of Sochi.
Local teenagers shared pictures and videos of the dead-alive Alexander on social media.
Unsurprisingly, local officials later confirmed the story was fake, revealing there had been no discovery of new bodies, or earth-moving phenomena, at the cemetery.
On Thursday, Demin admitted that Tuva's local police also had contacted the publication, accusing them of creating a fake bear news story.
The Independent believes a puppet and/or special effects were used to trick people into believing that both stories were true.
As of yet, it isn't clear why there had been attempts by people to plant a fake story, but several possibilities could be they were aiming to demonstrate the folly of viral news or to have a joke.
Who is 'Alexander' then?
EADaily news agency has offered a cash reward for anyone who can identify the man, known as "Alexander" to find out the true story.
But every hospital in Tuva has denied that the man had been a patient, the Daily Mail reports.
At the same time, Independent researchers unveiled that the video clip may have come from Kazakhstan, Russia's neighbour.
At the same time, checks by independent researchers point to the video clip of the man being not from Russia, as a second language used by a female in the footage has been revealed not as Tuvan but Kazakh.
A different group claimed that the video shows a man who was recently admitted to hospital in the city of Aktobe.
The group, called zello.poisk, clarified he came from Aktobe and had not been attacked by a bear.
"We checked the hospitals (in Aktobe) and asked them to help us," they wrote in a post.
"In the end we discovered that this man (in the 'bear den' case) is from our city.
"He is being treated in one of the hospitals and is getting better."
The group said of the man featured in the video is ill but doctors told them they will cure him.
"Of course, how he turned out to be in such state we will never know ..." they wrote.
A hospital source in Aktobe also indicated today that the bearded man in the video is a patient under treatment.
However, there was no formal statement to confirm this from the hospital.
There is still no information on how the man in the video had come about the injuries shown on the video.