I was asked on facebook this by the wonderful Heidi McSexiness (name changed to protect identity) :
A friend just posted this:
"ATTENTION ALL FACEBOOK USERS DO NOT ADD LINDA SMITH ALSO IF SOMEONE CALLED JASON LEE ADDS U DONT ACCEPT IT IS A VIRUS TELL EVERYBODY ON UR LIST IF THEY ADD THEM U ALSO GET THE VIRUS TOO COPY AN PASTE PLEASE REPOST******THIS AS BEEN CONFIRMED BY FACEBOOK"
Is this true or just a hoax?
Hoax : It's the first one on this list. These and similar are always fake that I'm aware of. To begin with, adding someone on a social networking site will not give you a virus. In order to get a virus you'd have downloaded and opened something. Generally speaking these are usually some jilted ex trying to get back at his now Ex-GF and her new BF or some other similar "I want to see them suffer" type of thing.
While on the subject, Amber alerts seen in e-mail, twits and on social networking sites are sadly hoaxes 99% of the time. Normally its some jerk trying to get that person arrested or harassed over nothing. This type of cyber-bullying has been around since the early days of the net and on party lines and such.(1)
If it's an amber alert check http://www.amberalert.gov/ . They have a search engine and if its remotely similar it will pop it up. Be sure to actually read the alert if it does pop one up, people quite often use real ones and just change it a bit to suit their needs.
Common false amber alerts will contain some nice sounding details including maybe the tag # or name of the person they want harassed. Also they will generally end with something like : " Please Copy & Paste this as your status. Imagine if this was YOUR child. You'd want help"
(1) There was an incredible article I read many years ago in Rolling Stone I think it was (and again later in my Computer Security classes) about a blind little kid who could hear the tones in a phone and tell the number. He would "swat" (sending swat teams to people homes) people who would not do as he wanted IE - phone sex etc. He's a perfect example of advanced cyberbullying. This is not the very long article I was thinking of, but it will due. Go to (currently) the 2nd article down on the site. Be sure to check out the 911 recordings to hear how this boy would "punish" those who disobeyed him.