Over the weekend, you might have seen a wave of panicked friends in your Facebook news feeds posting warnings: Their accounts were hacked; don’t accept friend requests that appear to be from them. Or maybe you received a private message warning you that youraccount had been compromised.
The warning spread in the form of a message, sent from a friend or “friend.” The message claims that the sender received a suspicious friend request from you, and that the proper way to address this disturbing news is to immediately share the message they sent to you with all your friends.
It reads something like this:
“Hi....I actually got another friend request from you 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. PLEASE DO NOT ACCEPT A NEW friendship FROM ME AT THIS TIME.”
Should you be worried? Well, we have some good news and bad news. The good news is: Chances are, you were not hacked if you received this message, nor are you being impersonated on Facebook, and no fraudulent friend requests got sent. The whole thing is a viral hoax. The bad news is: People are falling for yet another copy/paste hoax on Facebook, a website with a long history of them.
If you got one of those messages, there are a couple of things you can do: First, check on your friend’s account and make sure it’s not a clone of their real account (if you search their name and find two completely identical accounts, that’s a pretty good sign that one is a clone). And if you were messaged by a “clone” of your friend, then report that account to Facebook-- cloned accounts violate Facebook’s Community Standards.