A study by a research firm that claimed Internet Explorer users have a lower IQ than users of other web browser, may in fact be fake.

The study, which was widely reported across the web, including on PC Advisor, was thought to have been carried out by Canadian psychometric consulting firm AptiQuant. The firm said it conducted more than 100,000 online IQ tests and on average, Internet Explorer users fared the worst, with IE6 users at the bottom of the pile and IE8 users performing slightly better.

Firefox, Chrome and Safari fell in the middle with little difference between them. IE with Chrome Frame and Camino landed on top, along with Opera, whose users scored the highest (on average).

However, it has since been revealed the firm's website and has only recently been launched, with the domain being registered on July 14. The website also bears a striking resemblance to the website belonging to French research company Central Test. For example, AptiQuant's Our Team page has the same images and job descriptions as Central Test, although the names have been changed.

It is unclear who is behind the stunt and AptiQuant has yet to respond for an email request for comment.