Facebook users are falling for a chain status update hoax that claims to protect their personal information under copyright laws.
The message has a few variations with date modifications to continually trick new users into reposting the scam. A nearly identical hoax which attempted to entice victims to sites filled with malware and viruses merged back in 2011, reports CBS. The first variation claims that Facebook will begin to charge a subscription fee to maintain private accounts:
“Now it’s official! It has been published in the media. Facebook has just released the entry price: $5.99 to keep the subscription of your status to be set to “private”. If you paste this message on your page, it will be offered free (paste not share) if not tomorrow, all your posts can become public. Even the messages that have been deleted or the photos not allowed. After all, it does not cost anything for a simple copy and paste.”
The second alludes to irrelevant treaties that will supposedly protect a user’s Facebook information from copyright infringement. This misleading post, which has been around since 2012, reads:
“As of September 28 2015 1146 am Eastern standard time, I do not give Facebook or any entities associated with Facebook permission to use my pictures, information, or posts, both past and future. By this statement, I give notice to Facebook it is strictly forbidden to disclose, copy, distribute, or take any other action against me based on this profile and/or its contents.
The content of this profile is private and confidential information. The violation of privacy can be punished by law (UCC 1-308- 1 1 308-103 and the Rome Statute). NOTE: Facebook is now a public entity. All members must post a note like this. If you prefer, you can copy and paste this version. If you do not publish a statement at least once it will be tactically allowing the use of your photos, as well as the information contained in the profile status updates. DO NOT SHARE. You MUST copy and paste.”
Facebook does not own users’ media as Facebook spokesman Andrew Noyes announced in a statement reported by USA Today:
“We have noticed some statements that suggest otherwise and we wanted to take a moment to remind you of the facts–when you post things like photos to Facebook, we do not own them. Under our terms, you grant Facebook permission to use, distribute, and share things you post, subject to the terms and applicable privacy settings.”