After the hoax email period, we now have an era of Facebook scams. These spread faster than your average flu, a person to four hundred more; if you pressed the share button, it is likely 20 people on your friend’s list did, too.
Below are 10 of the most common hoaxes found on Facebook in the recent years, some of which even date back to chain e-mail messages.
1. Celine Dion Death Hoax
Hollywood Breaking News – R.I.P Celine Dion At about 11 a.m. ET on Sunday (October 20, 2013), Celine Dion died in a plane crash. The culprit for the story is Global Associated, aka Mediafetcher. “Celine Dion presumed dead in private plane crash”, Global claims that Celine died today at “Denver Peak-Regional Airport”. a small private aircraft in distress ceased radio contact with the control tower and fell below radar frequency after reporting engine trouble and smoke in the cockpit. Actress, Celine Dion was believed to have been a passenger on the flight. Raw footage of her accident has been recorded and leaked to fox news but cannot be broadcasted over the air so it was uploaded via the internet for the public to view. Due to the graphic content of this video, please be advised 18+ only. Watch Full Exclusive Video–>
If you saw this post on Facebook, and were sad about her demise, cheer up! Dion is well and alive.
This post, which is normally accompanied by a video, installs an Application which then sends out the false death reports to all of your friends. By clicking on the link, you have unknowingly shared this hoax with your friend’s list on Facebook. There are reports of this link tricking the user into downloading malicious software as well. Beware!
2. Facebook Likes for Money Hoax
This particular scam is perhaps one of the oldest ones in the history. It tricks the user into thinking that ‘liking’ the picture accompanying this post will actually generate money which will then be used to treat the child in the picture.
Facebook has not, and will not, donate any money based on your likes and shares of any post. However, there will be an increase in the popularity of the page on which these posts are present. Most hoaxes which suggest that liking a picture of an injured person will somehow help them are created by people looking for ways to boost the popularity of their pages.
The child in the picture is Xiao Bao from southern China, whose story you can read here.
3. Facebook Profile Viewer Hoax
Stalking someone on Facebook and worried that they might find out? Well, don’t. Every time someone claims to show who visited your profile last, don’t click on it, because it definitely is a scam. Facebook does not allow users to find out who last visited their profile.
In the worse case scenario, clicking on the link will lead to multiple verification processes, eventually leading to important account information being leaked to the scammer. This person will then be able to hijack your account with considerable ease.
4. ‘Birds Can Die from Discarded Gum’ Hoax
The picture below has been circulating on Facebook for quite some time now. It claims that birds mistake chewing gum on the ground for bread pieces, and leads to their slow and painful demise.
This sounds correct and maybe even logical. However, experts have said that while birds might accidentally lodge chewing gum in their airways, the fact remains that it is very unlikely to happen. Birds in parks tend to peck on the gum and, once they realize it’s not something they want to eat, they leave it and move on. (Source: CBS21 ‘Lie or Legit’)
Despite the message itself being a hoax, it is important to remember that it comes with an important moral, that is, to be responsible with our trash and to dispose off it as soon as possible. Leaving trash on the ground might not kill birds, but it can be harmful to others.
5. ‘Child Missing at Legoland’ Hoax
This hoax is actually a false warning regarding a kidnapping that took place at Legoland. The details are sketchy and inaccurate, and there is no record of any such incident being reported. The message circulated is as follows:
To everyone who have a child, please read!!! This incident happened last sunday, at legoland. My friend’s friend family went to legoland for a holiday last sunday. While queueing up for food, she took her eyes off her 6 year old son for a moment. In just a few seconds, she realise her son was missing. Quickly she report to the legoland staff and they close down the exits in the area. The whole legoland staff was alerted and a wide search was conducted for a few hours. Finally they found her son. What was horrifying is that her son has been shaved botak, changed his clothes and shoes, and was placed in a stroller being pushed out of the place. The kid was found to be in a drowsy state, believed to be given something to smell to knock him out. Please share to warn all your relatives to be careful when bringing your family out on a holiday!!!! Please spread
Unlike what the post says, kindly do not spread the warning. A similar warning was issued back in 2011, about an incident occurring at Wonderland. In fact, it is suggested that different versions of the same story date back as far as the 1980s!