You may have been forwarded this message a few dozen times over the weekend from your not-so-tech savvy relatives, but never fear, you weren't really hacked, nor were you sending out friend requests. The message was a viral hoax that caught fire.
The message (in most forms) reads:
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! PLEASE DO NOT ACCEPT A NEW ONE FROM ME AT THIS TIME.
The message then tries to get recipients to forward the message along to everyone in their contacts, in an effort to spread the message even further.
Cloned accounts have always been an issue for Facebook, but there was nothing to indicate a spike in fake accounts over the weekend. People reported sending the message on to their contacts, even if they didn't actually receive any friend requests. The hoax works by suggesting that your account has been compromised in some manner, even when it hasn't.
Officials in Louisiana offered a warning against the hoax, writing on Facebook that, "You can stop forwarding that latest warning from your Facebook friends about being hacked. You weren’t. It’s bogus. And you're just making it worse.
"Your account isn’t sending duplicate friend requests. And you didn’t receive a request from the person you’re forwarding it to.You’re simply doing it because the message tells you to," the post says.
While the viral message hoax is annoying, it's certainly understandable. Facebook recently reported a security breachthat affected over 50 million user accounts. That security breach allowed hackers to exploit a bug that affected its popular "View As" feature that allowed attackers the ability to steal "Access Tokens" - or digital keys that allow users to remain logged in. Hackers were able to use those access tokens to seize control of user accounts, Facebook wrote.
However, feel free in trashing the message if you continue to get receive it from anyone else.
Photo: Getty Images