Let’s Play Spot the Hoax

Once you’ve been in the IT security field for a while, you reach a point where you can spot a hoax without even doing any research. That doesn’t mean that you DON’T do the research. It just means that you can focus on the statements that are most likely to be hoaxes. Eventually you become good enough to spot the hoax about 99 out of 100 times.

Let’s see if you can tell which of the following messages comes from a Facebook hoax and which is a legitimate message from an actual person.

#1 FACEBOOK FRIENDS!!! SOME APPS ARE SENDING NOT VERY NICE MESSAGES USING YOUR NAME!!! IF YOU DON’T WANT TO GET INTO TROUBLE WITH YOUR FRIENDS, COPY PASTE AND SHARE THE POST!! IF YOU HAVE RECEIVED ANY FROM ME, BE ASSURED I DIDN’T SEND IT

#2 Dudes, I just got clickjacked by a link that promised to show me a hilarious video about some girl falling off a horse. Don’t follow that sh*t or it will annoy you and all your friends. PS- sorry for any messages that you might have gotten from me that weren’t actually from me. WORD!

And the winner is…

#1, of course, is the hoax. The very first thing that should jump out at you is the excessive use of capital letters. That’s a dead give away. For some reason, about 75 percent of Facebook hoaxes use ALL CAPS ALL THE TIME. I don’t even pretend to understand why.

#1 also stands out because of its vague message. “Not very nice messages” doesn’t mean anything. What are we talking about, here?

Finally, think about which one of these messages is actually useful. #1 doesn’t say anything except “share this post.” That’s exactly what every hoax wants. #2, however, tells you not to click on the offensive link. The person that posted this wants to warn his friends and apologize for any messages that got sent to them through his account. He’s not interested in spreading the news to every corner of Facebook. He’s concerned about something specific rather than a vague notion of spreading the word for its own sake.

Advertisements

~ by facebookhoaxes on June 11, 2011.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

 
%d bloggers like this: