Facebook hoax: scam messages claim account compromise

by Ugnius Kiguolis - -

The fake warning spreads in a form of a private message on Facebook

Facebook friend request hoax

Many Facebook users started to panic and rushed messaging their friends that their accounts have been compromised, and no friend requests from a so-called “cloned” accounts should be accepted. However, this is merely a viral hoax that is multiplying really fast, mainly because of the message contents:

Hi…I actually got another friend request from you yesterday…which I ignored so you may want to check your account. Hold your finger on the message until the forward button appears…then hit forward and all the people you want to forward too…I had to do the people individually. Good Luck!

A phishing attack was aimed at random users, and in the message, the poster claimed that multiple friend requests were sent from the victim's account, hence the reason for contacting. Then, bad actor suggests that the only appropriate action would be to warn everybody on the person's friend list by pressing and holding their finger on the message. This is fake, and by forwarding it to all Facebook users on the friend list, the victim only makes matters worse, increasing the spread of a bogus message.

Many may think that their account is compromised, and Facebook is sending friend requests, but the officials from Plaquemines Parish Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness warn[1] that there is no need to panic, and no virus or a bug is responsible for such actions. There is no Facebook friend request hack that you should be worried about.

Facebook Account cloning is real, but not this time

A year and a half ago Facebook suffered a huge account cloning epidemic. Scammers simply copy the necessary information (such as profile picture, address, name and all the other available details) needed to make a similarly-looking account. As soon as the new account is set up, the bad actor can then send out Facebook friend requests to multiple users. 

Many users, thinking that the person is actually the one that they think he or she is, accept the friend request. After that, the scammer can send fake messages, prompting users to enter their sensitive information, download malware or install Apps that are entirely unnecessary.[2] All in all, this activity is real and should be taken into consideration.

If you are in doubt, scrutinize the account that is sending your suspicious links and asks you weird questions, as you might be a victim of Facebook friend request hack.

Nevertheless, the current hoax is based on users believing that their accounts were cloned, while in reality, it is most likely not the case.

Facebook hoaxes are common – do not get tricked by them

Facebook is a largest social network platform in the world, hosting over 2.2 billion accounts,[3] and various scams and hoaxes are common, for obvious reasons. 

One of the hoaxes tries to play on Facebook users' trust, especially after the Cambridge Analytica scandal. In the fraudulent message, it is claimed that Facebook limits users' News Feed to 26 friends only.[4] While the company did indeed perform a few changes to the way the News Feed works, it is not in the way it was described in the hoax.

While some hoaxes might try to swindle your personal information away or make you click on suspicious links (like clicking ob bogus YouTube link)[5], the current hoax simply does not pose any danger, as long as you ignore the false message.

Nevertheless, if you do suspect that your Facebook account might be compromised, contact Facebook and change your passwords immediately.

About the author

Ugnius Kiguolis
Ugnius Kiguolis - The mastermind

Ugnius Kiguolis is a professional malware analyst who is also the founder and the owner of 2-Spyware. At the moment, he takes over as Editor-in-chief.

Contact Ugnius Kiguolis
About the company Esolutions

References