Bogus Warnings - False Alert Hoaxes
'R.I.P. Miley Cyrus' Facebook Scam
Circulating Facebook post claims that singer Miley Cyrus has died. The post features a teaser image of the star on a bed with a bottle of pills beside her. Clicking the image supposedly opens a video with more information about the star's demise.
Published: November 6, 2014
Isis Door Knocking Warning Message is a Hoax
A 'warning' circulating via social media websites and text messages claims that members of the terror group Isis are going door to door in Australia with a view to 'marking' Christian homes.
Published: September 29, 2014
HOAX - 'Cosmic Rays Entering Earth From Mars'
Circulating message warns that potentially dangerous cosmic rays will be entering the Earth from Mars between 10:30 pm and 3:30 am tonight and users should switch off their mobile devices. The message claims that the information comes from BBC News.
Published: September 15, 2014
HOAX - 'Chemical Laced $100 Bills Placed on Cars to Kidnap Drivers'
Circulating message claims that criminals are placing $100 bills laced with a debilitating chemical on cars as a means of making drivers who touch the note pass out so that they can be kidnapped or assaulted.
Published: September 1, 2014
Decorative Magnets on Refrigerators - Cancer Warning Hoax
Warning message claims that researchers at Princeton University have discovered that electromagnetic radiation from decorative magnets stuck to refrigerator doors "radiated" the food inside thereby massively increasing the probability of cancer in test mice used in the study.
Published: August 13, 2014
Contact Lens BBQ Warning Hoax
Message claims that staring at a BBQ fire while wearing contact lenses can cause the lenses to melt and lead to permanent blindness.
Updated: July 21, 2014
Bogus Warning - Don't Flash Headlights Gang Initiation
Message purporting to be from security company Chubb warns drivers not to flash their headlights at any cars driving with no lights on. The message claims that, as part of a gang initiation, gang members will chase any car that flashes them and shoot and kill all of the cars occupants.
Updated: July 18, 2014
False Claim - Onions are Magnets for Bacteria
Circulating health warning claims that raw or leftover onions are poisonous because they are magnets for bacteria and are therefore not safe to eat.
Updated: July 16, 2014
Misleading Warning about Missed Calls From +375 and +371 Numbers
Message circulating via SMS, social media and email warns you not to return missed calls from numbers starting with +375 or +371 because you will be charged between $15 and $30 for each returned call and your contact list and financial information will be instantly stolen from your phone.
Updated: July 15, 2014
Hoax - 'Dangerous 'New Known Spider' Spreading In Australia'
Circulating message warns you to watch out for a very dangerous 'new known spider' that is spreading across Australia. The message includes a picture of the spider along with a series of images supposedly depicting a wound caused by a bite from one of the spiders.
Published: July 10, 2014
Facebook Deleting Inactive Users Hoax - 'Facebook Overpopulated'
Messages claim that Facebook is becoming overpopulated and that members who do not send the information to others within two weeks will have their accounts deleted.
Updated: July 8, 2014
HOAX - 'Breast Larvae Infestation From Undergarments'
Circulating message that includes an image depicting an unusual rash on a woman's breast, claims that the rash harboured live larvae that were feeding off her fat, tissue, and milk canals.
Updated: June 2, 2014
HOAX - 'Semen Found on McDonald's Burger'
Circulating report claims that a woman in Michigan found semen in the mayonnaise of a McDonald's burger and caught herpes as a result of the contamination.
Published: May 28, 2014
HOAX - 'Maggie From Sweden Hacker Alert'
Circulating social media message warns users not to accept a friend request from a person called 'Maggie from Sweden' because she is a hacker.
Published: May 15, 2014
BOGUS WARNING - ' White Van With Reg 7465 CGF Stealing Dogs'
Viral social media messages claim that men driving a white van with the registration number 7465 CGF are attempting to steal dogs for dog fighting in various locations in the UK and other parts of Europe. The messages include a picture of the white van.
Published: April 24, 2014
NONSENSE - 'All Americans Microchipped by 2017'
Report claims that a 2007 NBC News segment predicted that all Americans would be microchipped by the year 2017. The reports suggest that the implanted RFID microchips will be used by the US government to control its citizens.
Published: April 10, 2014
809 Area Code Scam Warning Email
Circulating messages warn that consumers are being tricked into dialling international telephone numbers and thereby incurring enormous call charges of thousands of dollars per minute.
Updated: April 4, 2014
No, Energy Drinks Do NOT Contain Bull Sperm
Message circulating via social media claims that the 'longhorn cattle company' tested some of the top brands of energy drink and found that they contain bull sperm.
Published: March 19, 2014
AIDS From Contaminated Take Away Food Warning
Message claims that a ten-year-old boy was diagnosed with AIDS after eating take-away food contaminated with blood from a cook who already had the illness.
Updated: March 12, 2014
Absurd Warning Claims That Monster Energy Drink Logo Hails Satan
Message circulating via email and the blogosphere warns that Monster Energy Drinks claw "M" logo is actually made up of the Hebrew letter vav repeated three times to make the number 666 and is therefore the mark of Satan.
Updated: May 15, 2014
Hoax - 'Instagram Randomly Deleting Accounts'
Circulating social media messages claim that image sharing service Instagram will be randomly deleting a "huge mass" of accounts on a specified date or is removing accounts due to "money loss". According to the message, users can keep their accounts safe from deletion by reposting the warning.
Updated: March 7, 2014
Misleading and Inaccurate Warning ? 'Don?t Answer Calls While Charging Cell Phone'
Social media message claims that a boy died in Mumbai because he took a call while his mobile phone was charging. The message also claims that people should not make or answer calls when a mobile phone's battery is low because the radiation is 1000 times stronger.
Published: February 3, 2014
Roach Eggs on Envelopes Hoax
Message claims that licking envelopes to seal them can result in cockroach eggs incubating and hatching in the person's mouth.
Updated: January 23, 2014
Legoland Child Abduction Attempt Hoax
Circulating message claims that a child went missing at Legoland but was later found with a shaved head and new clothes, drugged in a stroller, and ready to be taken out of the theme park by his would-be abductors.
Published: January 13, 2014
Fake Picasa 'New Photos' Emails Point to Dodgy Pharmacy Website
Emails purporting to be from image management system Picasa claims that new photos have been added to the user's album and they can click a button to view the album.
Published: January 13, 2014
Hoax Warning: Lost Child Lure - 'New Way for Gang Members to Rape Women'
Circulating message warns that violent gang members are using children who pretend to be lost as a means of tricking women into going to gang houses where they will be raped.
Updated: January 9, 2014
Hoax - Romanian Door-to-Door Perfume Sellers Burundanga Robberies
Circulating warning claims that Romanian criminals in Spain are posing as door-to-door perfume sellers in an effort to get people to sniff a debilitating drug - possibly burundanga - so that the criminals can then enter and rob their houses.
Published: December 13, 2013
Paper Laced With Drugs Perfume Hoax
Message circulating via social media warns that criminals disguised as perfume sellers are using paper laced with drugs to debilitate victims and then rob them.
Published: November 29, 2013
Bogus Health Warning - Scratch Card 'Silver Nitro Oxide' Coating Causes Skin Cancer
Message warns people not to use fingernails to scratch off the coating on scratch tickets because the coating contains a substance called "Silver Nitro oxide" that can cause skin cancer.
Updated: November 27, 2013
ASDA Attempted Kidnapping Hoax
Circulating social media message claims a little girl went missing in an ASDA store but was later found in the store's toilets where a "foreign man and woman" were changing her clothes and cutting her hair.
Published: November 5, 2013
False Rumour - Patron at Cosmo Romford Finds Dog Microchip Wedged in Tooth
Message circulating via Facebook claims that a diner at the Cosmo Romford restaurant found a dog microchip stuck in her tooth after eating a curry at the restaurant.
Published: November 4, 2013
Hoax - Hacking Group Anonymous Targeting Facebook Users With Giraffe Profile Pics
Facebook warning message claims that the hacking group Anonymous is wiping out the bank accounts and hard drives of people who have played the popular giraffe challenge riddle game and are therefore using giraffe profile images.
Published: October 28, 2013
Giraffe Profile Picture Virus Hoax.
Message circulating rapidly on Facebook claims that changing your profile picture to that of a giraffe will allow hackers to steal your Facebook login details and remotely control your computer.
Published: October 28, 2013
Bogus Warning - Canned Fruit From Thailand Contaminated With HIV
Circulating message claims that HIV carriers in Thailand have deliberately contaminated canned fruit in a factory by dripping their blood into the food.
Published: October 28, 2013
Instant Noodles do NOT contain a Wax Coating That Causes Cancer
Message circulating via social media claims that instant noodles have a wax coating to stop them from sticking together and that this wax can build up in your body and cause cancer.
Published: October 25, 2013
Hoax - Cell Phone Numbers Go Public This Month
Message warns recipients that cell phone numbers are set to be released to telemarketing companies this month and that consumers will be charged for incoming calls from these companies. The message urges people to register on the Do Not Call list to have their cell phone numbers blocked from such calls.
Updated: October 18, 2013
Hoax - HIV Needles Hidden Under Gas Pump Handles
Message going viral via social media claims that HIV infected needles are being placed under gas pump handles and that 16 people have already been stabbed by the needles when they tried to fill their gas tanks.
Published: October 9, 2013
Hoax Message Warns Users Not To Contact DreamWeaverGrey
Circulating hoax message warns users not to make any contact with a person with the screen-name "DreamWeaverGrey" because he is a suspect in the murders of 56 women that he met through the Internet.
Updated: October 1, 2013
Hoax Warning Message - 'National Kill A Pit Bull Day'
Warning message circulating via social media claims that October 31 (Halloween Night) has been designated as "National Kill a Pit Bull Day" and warns dog owners to lock up their animals because people have been instructed to go out and kill as many pit bulls and other dog breeds as possible before midnight on the designated day.
Updated: September 19, 2013
Hoax: HIV Infected Blood In Pepsi
Circulating messages warn people not to drink Pepsi products because a Pepsi worker has contaminated bottles with his HIV infected blood.
Updated: September 19, 2013
Bogus Warning - 'Russian Booksellers Looking For Children'
Viral social media messages warn that Russian booksellers are going door to door in various US locations with the intention of getting information about children for later abductions and human trafficking.
Published: August 30, 2013
Crying Baby Serial Killer Hoax
Circulating message warns that a serial killer is using a recording of a crying baby to lure potential victims out of their houses.
Updated: August 30, 2013
Gang Initiation Warning Hoax - Infant Car Seat Left On Roadside
Warning message claims that criminals in the UK are placing infant car seats containing fake babies on the sides of rural roads as a means of tricking potential victims into stopping their cars so that gang members can rape and rob them as part of a gang initiation.
Updated: August 29, 2013
Nichole Morgan Friend Request Hacker Hoax
Nichole Morgan Friend Request Hacker Hoax
Published: July 31, 2013
Circulating Warning Claims Antiperspirants Cause Breast Cancer
Long circulated message claims that antiperspirants are the leading cause of breast cancer because they stop toxins from being removed in sweat and instead deposit the toxins in the lymph nodes.
Published: July 26, 2013
Myth – Ice Water Can Cause Dangerous Bloating in Dogs
Long running Internet warning claims that pet owners should never give their dogs ice water and cites a case of a show dog that suffered severe bloat after drinking water with ice in it.
Published: July 11, 2013
Hoax Warning Claims Deadly Swine Flu Epidemic in South Africa
An Afrikaans language message circulating rapidly via email and social media claims that 65 people have died and 25 women have miscarried in recent months due to an outbreak of a deadly strain of swine flu.
Published: July 4, 2013
Christopher or Jessica Davies Hacker Hoax Warning
Message warns recipients not to accept a friend request from Christopher Davies or Jessica Davies because they are hackers who can gain access to your computer and the computers of your friends as well.
Updated: June 21, 2013
Perfume Email Hoax
Circulating messages claim that criminals lurking in parking areas are using drugs disguised as perfume to debilitate and rob victims.
Updated: June 12, 2013
Cold Water Causes Cancer Warning Message - Warm Water and Heart Attacks
Message claims that drinking cold water after a meal will solidify "oily stuff" present in the food consumed and will lead to cancer. A new version recommends drinking warm water with meals and tacks on unrelated information about heart attacks.
Updated: June 3, 2013
Tanner Dwyer Friend Request Hacker Hoax
Circulating social media message warns users that accepting friend requests from Tanner Dwyer, Christopher Butterfield, Stefania Colac or Alejando Spiljner can allow hackers to access your computer and steal personal information.
Updated: May 28, 2013
No, A Facebook Page is NOT Stealing Baby Photos of People Who Have 'Baby' On Their Walls
A flurry of breathless Facebook messages warn users that a Facebook Page is automatically stealing baby photos from anyone that has the word "baby" written on their Facebook Walls or images and compiling the photos into one place.
Published: May 9, 2013
Becoming a Father or Mother Facebook Group Pedophile Warning Hoax
Message circulating on Facebook warns users not to join the group titled "becoming a father or mother was the greatest gift of my life" because it is operated by a group of pedophiles intent on accessing your Facebook photographs.
Updated: April 30, 2013
Exploding Cactus Spider Hoax
Message warns that certain kinds of cacti can harbour large tarantula spiders that will be explosively released from the plants when they reach maturity.
Updated: April 18, 2013
Burundanga Business Card Drug Warning
Circulating warning claims that criminals are attempting to incapacitate women in order to rob or rape them by handing them business cards laced with a powerful drug called Burundanga.
Published: April 16, 2013
Viral Facebook Message Falsely Claims that a Pictured Man is Posing as an RSPCA Officer and Stealing Dogs
Message circulating rapidly on Facebook claims that a man depicted in an attached photograph is posing as an RSPCA officer and has attempted to steal dogs in the South Yorkshire area of the UK.
Published: March 28, 2013
Gun Owner Vehicle Tagging Hoax
Circulating warning claims that criminal gangs are tagging gun owner vehicles with dots, check marks or coloured stickers so that guns can be later stolen.
Published: March 26, 2013
Use Left Ear For Mobile Phone Hoax
Outline Message supposedly endorsed by the "Apollo medical team", claims that mobile (cell) phone users should always use the left ear for calls because using the right ear will directly affect the brain. A later version, which circulates as a graphic, omits the medical team reference but maintains that using the right ear for mobile phone calls makes our brains more prone to mobile radiation.
Updated: March 23, 2013
Bogus Warning – White Transit Van 'RH57 WSU' Trying To Steal Dogs
Message circulating virally via social media posts and email warns that a white transit van with the registration 'RH57 WSU' has been seen trying to steal dogs in various locations in the UK and elsewhere.
Published: March 23, 2013
Urban Legend - Couple Arrested at Airport with Dead Baby Stuffed With Drugs
Circulating message claims that police who detained a young couple with a baby at a Las Vegas airport discovered that the baby was dead and that its body had been packed with illegal drugs.
Published: March 22, 2013
Hoax - Eating Shrimp and Taking Vitamin C Can Cause Death by Arsenic Poisoning
Circulating health message warns recipients not to eat shrimp or prawns while taking vitamin C because it can cause a chemical reaction that can lead to sudden death by arsenic poisoning.
Updated: March 11, 2013
KFC 'Genetically Manipulated Organisms' Hoax
Messages claims that fast-food outlet KFC changed its name from Kentucky Fried Chicken because it uses genetically manipulated organisms rather than real chickens and therefore cannot legally use the word "chicken" in its name. As evidence, the message cites a "recent study" conducted by the University of New Hampshire.
Published: March 5, 2013
Perth Dog Fighting Gang 'Coloured Stickers' Hoax
Messages going viral via Social Media outlets warn dog owners that a dog fighting gang is stealing dogs from households in Perth, Western Australia. The messages claim gang members are marking houses where dogs live with coloured stickers so that the dogs can be later stolen.
Published: March 4, 2013
Kidney Stealing Hoax
Message warns that medically trained criminals are stealing kidneys from living victims to sell on the black market. According to the warning, victims awake in a bathtub full of ice to discover that their kidneys have been removed.
Updated: March 1, 2013
Bogus Warning - 'Talking Angela' Threat to Children
Circulating warning claims that a site called "Talking Angela" is collecting personal information from children and taking their photographs without notice.
Published: February 25, 2013
Frederic Pretty Facebook Hacker Hoax
Message circulating on Facebook warns people not to accept a user called Frederic Pretty into their contacts because it is a very powerful hacking account.
Published: February 12, 2013
Blackberry 'Broadcast or Update Cancelled' Hoax
Rapidly circulating text message claims that Blackberry users must broadcast the same message to all their contacts or they will miss out a BBM update and will no longer be able to chat with friends because they will have the old version.
Published: January 18, 2013
Lead in Lipstick Alert - Cancer Causing Lipstick Hoax
Email claims that certain brands of lipstick contain dangerous amounts of lead and can cause cancer. The message includes a list of lipstick brands and instructions for testing lipsticks for lead content.
Updated: January 18, 2013
Destiny Valle Facebook Page Hacker 'Warning'
Facebook message claims that a hacker named "Destiny Valle" is taking control of Facebook Pages by deleting existing admins and removing details about the real Page owner so that she can can claim that she owns the page herself.
Published: January 15, 2013
Fake NSW Police Warning - Tracking Devices Placed on Cars
Widespread social media message purporting to be a warning from NSW police claims that criminals are placing tiny tracking devices on cars and then using the devices to locate victims at their homes and attack and rob them.
Published: January 10, 2013
Sun Powered Key Ring Tracking Device Hoax
Message warns that a free key holder being handed out at petrol stations contains a hidden device that is being used by criminals to track the movements of potential victims.
Updated: December 22, 2012
Holiday Horrors – Are Common Seasonal Decorations Toxic?
As every year comes to a close, persistent rumors make their annual appearance regarding the lethality of the common holiday plant, the Poinsettia. While largely overblown, there are other common seasonal decorative plants that are far more of a hazard to your 2- and 4- legged charges.
Published: December 10, 2012
Leptospirosis Death Warning - Rat Urine on Soda Can Top
Email claims that a woman died after catching Leptospirosis from dried rat urine on the lid of a soda can.
Updated: December 3, 2012
Check Your Receipts - Cash Back Scam Warning Email
Message warns shoppers to always check their receipts before leaving the check-out at Sainsbury's and other UK stores because many people are being caught out by a scam in which unscrupulous cashiers add unauthorized cash back requests to transactions and pocket the cash rather than give it to customers.
Updated: November 22, 2012
DEW Bottled Water Fatal Poisoning Hoax
Circulating message warns consumers not to drink any bottled water called "DEW" because it contains a poisonous chemical that has already killed 180 people in Nigeria.
Updated: November 21, 2012
Misinformation Regarding Straight Ticket Voting On 06 November 2012 US General Election
A currently circulating post claims that voting a Democratic straight party ticket excludes a vote for incumbent President Obama. The only state where that is true is North Carolina, and applies to straight ticket voting in general – not just Democrats. It has no relevance in any other state.
Published: November 1, 2012
Dubious Facebook 'Security Alert' - Obama Nation Hackers
"Security alert" circulating rapidly on Facebook warns users that "Obama Nation hackers" are taking control of people's accounts by tricking them into clicking Romney requests for profile information or responding to security check requests.
Published: October 12, 2012
Hoax - 'Deadly Sanitary Pad' Responsible for 53 Deaths
Widely circulated warning message claims that a "deadly sanitary pad" called DARIES has recently caused 53 women in Johannesburg to bleed to death due to the inclusion of chemicals in the pad's material.
Published: August 16, 2012
Nine Zero Hash Phone Scam Hoax
Email claims that a scammer can take control of you phone if you key in 90#.
Updated: 31st May 2012
Do Not Call - Mobile Phones Going Public Hoax
Circulating email warns that mobile phone numbers in Australia are "going public" next month and claims that consumers will be charged for calls made to them by telemarketing companies.
Updated: 9th May 2012
False Warning - Facebook Will Soon Require Social Security Numbers When Users Login
Message circulating on Facebook claims that, as an anti-spam measure, users will be required to enter their social security numbers when they login to the network from April 2012.
Published: 2nd March 2012
Strawberry Quick Methamphetamine Warning
Messages warn that a form of strawberry colored and scented methamphetamine dubbed "Strawberry Quick" is being distributed to school children.
Updated: 24th February 2012
Cruise Control Hydroplane Warning
Email forward warns that drivers should not use cruise control in wet conditions because its use can cause the vehicle to accelerate and fly through the air if it hits standing water and hydroplanes.
Updated: 20th February 2012
Urban Legend - Rapist Hides in Back Seat at Garage
Social media message tells the tale of a woman who narrowly escaped being attacked by a convicted rapist who hid in the back seat of her car when she went to pay for petrol at a garage in Longton UK.
Published: 8th February 2012
Unfounded Facebook Rumour - Thierry Mairot Wants to Talk to Children About Sex
Message circulating on Facebook warns people to watch out for for a man named Thierry Mairot because he is attempting to contact children on Facebook to talk about sex.
Updated: 9th January 2012
Hoax Warning - Anthrax in Tide Detergent Packs
Circulating warning messages claim that seven people have died after being exposed to anthrax in packages that were disguised as Tide detergent samples sent in the mail.
Updated: 5th January 2012
Bogus Warning Claims KiK Messenger is a Hacking Scheme
Circulating social media messages claim that KiK Messenger is a hacking tool or virus that can steal your personal information.
Published: 4th January 2012
Hotel Key Card Security Risk Hoax
Email forward claims that sensitive personal information such as credit card numbers is routinely encoded on electronic hotel key cards and this represents a security risk to hotel guests.
Updated: 3rd December 2011
Bogus Warning - Scammers Asking for Baby Details to Claim Benefits in Your Children's Names
Warning circulating on Facebook claims that mothers are being asked to post details of their children, such as name, birth date and weight at birth, so that scammers can falsely claim benefits in the children's names.
Published: 24th November 2011
Hoax - Albany Bread Poisoned by Staff
Message circulating via email and social media warns South African consumers not to buy Albany Bread because it has been poisoned by disgruntled staff.
Published: 14th November 2011
False Warning - Red Dot Inside a Red Square On Chocolate Bars Indicates That Product Contains A Pork Derivative
Message warns Muslims that the presence of a symbol comprising a red dot inside a red square on the packaging of some chocolate bars indicates that the product contains gelatin derived from pork.
Published: 7th November 2011
Live Ants In The Brain Hoax
Warning claims that people have died after ants have entered their skulls by way of the ears and began eating their brains.
Published: 1st November 2011
Hoax Warning - 300km Winds for Johannesburg Region This Weekend
Email forward warns that winds of up to 300 kilometres per hour are set to strike the Johannesburg region this weekend.
Published: 14th October 2011
Hoax - Professional Hacker 'Faceb Hu' Taking Control Of Computers Via Friend Requests
"Urgent" Facebook message warns uses to watch out for a user called FACEB HU because he is a professional hacker who can take control of your computer if you accept - or even reject - his friend request.
Published: 19th August 2011
Mobile Phone Misinformation - XALAN and #90 Hoax
Email warning claims that a scammer can take over your mobile phone if you key in #90. The message also claims that a phone virus is circulating that can erase the SIM card of the infected mobile phone.
Updated: 8th July 2011
UPS Uniforms Hoax
Message claims that a large quantity of UPS uniforms has recently been bought on eBay and that the uniforms could be used by criminals or terrorists posing as delivery drivers.
Updated: 11th May 2011
Pointless Warning Message - Facebook About to Become Owner of Your Private Photos
Message circulating on Facebook warns users that on "Friday", Facebook will become owner of the publishing rights of all their private photos.
Published: 29th April 2011
Unfounded Facebook Rumour- Bob Howard Pedophile Warning
Circulating Facebook message warns that a 48 year old pedophile named Bob Howard is posing as a 14 year old on Facebook in order to make contact with children.
Published: 28th April 2011
Facebook Virus Using Your Pictures Warning
Message circulating on Facebook warns that a virus is using Facebook pictures as a means of hacking into computers, stealing information and destroying the infected computers.
Updated: 27th March 2011
Bogus Hacker Warning - ' Between First and Second Names in Facebook Chat
Message claims that if the characters "'" appear between the first and second names of the friends listed in your Facebook chat, it means that they have been hacked. It further warns that if you try to chat with these hacked friends, you will also be open to attack.
Published: 24th March 2011
Fake BBC News Alert Warns of Radiation Rain in Asian Countries
Message purporting to be a news flash from the BBC, claims that rain contaminated with radiation leaking from Fukushima nuclear plant in Japan may pose a danger to people living in Asian countries, including the Philippines.
Published: 16th March 2011
Hacker Warning Hoax - Do Not Accept Friend Requests From Bobby Roberts
Message warns people not to accept friend requests from Bobby Roberts because he is a hacker and his name will "destroy everything".
Published: 14th March 2011
Overblown Warning - Phone Numbers Now On Facebook
Message circulating on Facebook warns that phone numbers belonging to all Facebook users are now being published on Facebook.
Published: 18th February 2011
Liverpool and Manchester Shopping Centre Bomb Threat Hoax
Message claiming to originate from an ambulance service staff member warns that there is a credible bomb threat for tomorrow involving shopping centres in Liverpool and Manchester.
Published: 16th December 2010
Facebook Change Profile Picture to Cartoon Character Paedophile Warning Hoax
Facebook message warns that a recent campaign asking people to change their profile picture to a cartoon character as a means of raising awareness about child violence is actually a scheme run by a paedophile group intended to make it more likely that children will accept their friend requests.
Published: 6th December 2010
Driving With Snow on Car Roof Fixed Penalties Hoax
Message warns drivers in the UK that police will be stopping drivers with snow on the roof of their cars and issuing them with a fixed penalty consisting of a £60 fine and the loss of three points.
Published: 2nd December 2010
Bogus Warning - Australian Pythons and Venomous Snakes Are Interbreeding
Story claims that Australian venomous snakes such as the Taipan are cross breeding with harmless Carpet Pythons to produce deadly hybrids.
Updated: 1st December 2011
Mobile Phone Medical Equipment Warning - Phone Interference Caused Death Hoax
Warning message claims that a four year old child died in hospital during a minor operation due to interference from a mobile phone used outside the operating theatre.
Updated: 26th November 2010
Bogus Facebook Rumour- Harry Graham Pedophile Warning
Social network message warns that a 48 year old pedophile named Harry Graham is posing as a 14 year old on Facebook in order to make contact with children.
Published: 1st November 2010
Bogus Facebook Rumour - Thomas Cowling Wants to Talk to Children About Sex
Message being posted on Facebook warns users to watch out for a man named Thomas Cowling because he is attempting to contact children on Facebook to talk about sex.
Published: 9th October 2010
Facebook Hacked 'BBC News Team' Warning Message
Warning message, purporting to be from the BBC news team, claims that Facebook's main system has been hacked and users should change passwords immediately.
Published: 24th September 2010
Spider Under Florida Toilet Seat Hoax
Email claims that people have died after being bitten by a spider hiding under a restaurant toilet seat in Florida.
Updated: 21st September 2010
New Gifts For You Facebook Virus Warning
Warning circulating rapidly on Facebook warns users not to click on links labelled "New Gifts For You" because the links will launch a virus that will automatically spread via Facebook comments.
Published: 24th August 2010
BlackBerry RIM Inactive Account Hoax
Message circulating via BlackBerry Messenger, purporting to be from Research In Motion (RIM), claims that, due to a server problem, the recipient must resend the message to all his or her contacts or the account will remain inactive and contact information will be lost.
Published: 7th July 2010
Rehana 27 From Leicister Hacker Warning Hoax
Message warns users not to add 27 year old Rehana from "leicister" because she is a hacker.
Published: 25th June 2010
Deaths From Free Perfume Samples Hoax
Messages circulating via Facebook, SMS and email claim that seven women have died after inhaling free perfume samples sent to them in the mail.
Published: June 24, 2010
Old Woman and The Smashed Car Window Abduction Warning Hoax
Message claims that a violent male criminal is attempting to abduct women at the Galleria Shopping Centre in Perth Western Australia by pretending to be an old woman.
Published: 11th June 2010
McDonald's Ball Pit Death Hoax
Email forward claims that 3-year-old Kevin Archer died after being pricked by a heroin filled hypodermic needle left in a McDonald's ball pit.
Updated: 17th May 2010
Killer House Plant Warning
Message claims that an indoor plant that is commonly kept in homes and offices is so poisonous that it can kill a child in less than a minute and an adult in 15 minutes. The message, which comes with a photograph of the "killer plant", also warns that touching the plant and then rubbing your eyes can cause permanent blindness.
Published: 11th May 2010
Gmail Deleting Unused Accounts Hoax
Email, purporting to be an official notification from webmail service Gmail, claims that the user's Gmail account will be deleted if he or she does not forward the message to other contacts.
Published: 25th April 2010
Acid Rain Warning Hoax
Message warns recipients that there is a possibility of dangerous acid rain falling between the 20th and 28th of the month as indicated by dark circles appearing around the moon.
Published: 17th April 2010
Progesterex - Sterility Date Rape Drug Hoax
Email claims that a sterilization pill called Progesterex is being mixed with the date rape drug Rohypnol to facilitate sexual assaults that leave the victim sterile.
Updated: 14th April 2010
Flat Tire Mall Abduction Warning
Email forward claims that an apparent good Samaritan who changed a flat tire for a woman in a shopping mall car park was actually a deranged killer intent on abduction
Updated: 26th March 2010
Check Out YouTube Request - Facebook Trojan Worm Warning
Message circulating on Facebook warns users not to open a request to check out a YouTube video because it contains a "trojan worm" that can shut down the infected computer and steal personal information.
Published: 28th February 2010
Automation Labs Facebook Privacy Warning Hoax
Messages circulating on Facebook claim that by entering 'automation labs' in the "Block People" search function of Facebook's privacy settings will reveal a list of people who have access to your Facebook account and should be blocked individually so that they cannot spy on you.
Published: 4th February 2010
Facebook Unnamed App Internal Spybot Warning
Message circulating on Facebook warns that users should delete a Facebook application labelled "Unnamed app" because it is an "internal spybot" that can make Facebook runs more slowly than usual.
Published: 29th January 2010
Camel Spiders in Iraq Hoax Email
Email with attached photographs of two large camel spiders being held up by a soldier claim that the creatures are a danger to troops stationed in Iraq
Updated: 29th January 2010
HIV Infected Needles on UK Cinema Seats Hoax
Email forward claims that UK cinema visitors have been injured by HIV infected needles deliberately left on cinema seats
Updated: 29th January 2010
False Rumours Claim That Facebook is About to Start Charging Users
Rumours circulating via social networking websites and email claim that Facebook will soon begin charging members a monthly fee for use of its services.
Published: 27th January 2010
Long Island Terror Email Hoax
Email claims that a terrorist attack on Long Island will occur on the 26th November, 2004
Updated: December 2009
MSN Shutdown Hoax
Message claims that MSN will be shutting down for a "week or so" to allow problems to be fixed
Updated: December 2009
Monkeyman935 Online Warning Hoax
Email "warning" claims that someone with the screen-name "Monkeyman935" is killing women he has met via the Internet
Updated: December 2009
MSN 18 Contacts Hoax
Message warns that users will have to pay for MSN and email accounts unless they send the warning to at least 18 contacts
Updated: November 2009
Scam Rumours About The Westfield Gift Card Competition on Facebook
Circulating warnings suggest that a 2009 Westfield Shopping Australia Christmas gift card competition currently running on Facebook is a scam and contains trojans or viruses.
Published: November 2009
Nicotine in Tim Hortons Coffee Hoax
Message claims that Canadian coffee and doughnut chain, Tim Hortons, adds nicotine to its coffee and that patrons have suffered serious health problems as a result
Updated: October 2009
Gang Member Hidden in Back Seat Myth
Email forward claims that gang members are hiding in the back seats of cars in order to abduct young women driving alone
Updated: October 2009
Hotmail Account Hoax
Email claims that your Hotmail (or Yahoo) account will be terminated if you don't forward the message
Updated: September 2009
Alarmist and Inaccurate Swine Flu Warning
Swine flu warning email claims that the virus is already wiping out entire villages in Asia and is set to kill 6 out of ten people when a mutated version reaches the United States. The message claims that the information has been confirmed by the CDC and Johns Hopkins.
Published: July 2009
Plastics Cancer Link Email - Freezing Plastic Bottles - Plastics In the Microwave or Car
Email claims that freezing water or microwaving food in plastic containers or plastic wrap can lead to the consumption of cancer causing chemicals
Updated: May 2009
Killer Text Message Hoax
Warnings circulating in Egypt claim that people have suffered fatal brain hemorrhages after receiving a "killer" mobile phone text message from "unknown foreign quarters" containing a special combination of numbers.
Published: April 2009
Simon Ashton Email Hacker Hoax
Message warns that simply accepting an email from a sender called Simon Ashton (firstname.lastname@example.org) will allow him to hack your email account as well as the accounts of others on your email contact list
Updated: March 2009
Operation Yellow Jacket - Speeding Ticket Frenzy Hoax
Email warns motorists in Michigan about a "31 day speeding ticket frenzy" called "Operation Yellow Jacket" in which troopers will drive MI-DOT trucks as well as unmarked police cruisers in order to nab as many speeders as possible
Published: March 2009
Human Parts Factory Hoax
Email claims that attached images show a "human parts processing factory" in Russia where human organs are harvested for transplants
Published: September 2008
Mini Lobster Contamination Warning
Message warns people not to eat "mini lobsters" because they feed on sewerage, are full of worms and poisonous metals and can cause lung infections in humans
Published: April 2008
Point to Point Speed Camera Warning Email
Email warns that point to point speed camera systems have been installed on the M5 and M7 motorways in NSW, Australia
Published: March 2008
Cell Phone Charging Danger Warning Email
Email forward warns that answering a cell phone while it is being charged can electrocute the user
Updated: January 2008
Bogus Legislative Brief - Pennsylvania Driver Cell Phone Use
Email, purporting to be a Legislative Brief, claims that drivers in the state of Pennsylvania will be prohibited from using handheld mobile telephones from November 10, 2007
Published: October 2007
Optical Mouse Cancer Warning Hoax
Email warns that radiation emitted by an optical computer mouse can cause cancer and damage hand tissue
Published: July 2007
Olive Garden Syphilis Hoax
Email claims that a girl developed Syphilis in her mouth after eating semen-contaminated food at an Olive Garden restaurant in West Des Moines, Iowa
Published: July 2007
Heroin Needles and Snakes in Ball Pits - HIV Needles on Gas-Pump Handles
Email warning claims that a child died after being injected with a heroin-filled hypodermic needle left in a McDonald's ball pit and that another child died in a Burger King ball pit after being bitten by venomous snakes. It also claims that HIV infected needles are being deliberately left under gas-pump handles
Published: June 2007
New California Traffic Laws Hoax Email
Email forward includes a list of new 2007 traffic laws for the American state of California
Published: June 2007
Coke and Mentos Death Warning Email
Email claims that children have died after consuming Diet Coke and Mentos together. The message includes photographs of the violent reaction that occurs when Diet Coke and Mentos are combined
Published: June 2007
Compact Fluorescent Light Bulb Mercury Warning
News reports claim that if a Compact Fluorescent Light Bulb (CFL) is broken, it can release dangerous levels of mercury into the house and a professional environmental cleanup crew is required to handle the problem
Published: May 2007
Deadly Mobile Phone Virus Hoax
Warning email claims that receiving a mobile phone call from certain numbers will cause brain hemorrhaging and death
Published: April 2007
Panadol Toxic To Body Warning Message
Message warns that Panadol is toxic to the body and should never be taken
Updated: April 2007
Mike Conalley - M.O.B Screen Name Warning Hoax
Email claiming to be from the State Police warns that a person called Mike Conalley who uses the screen name "M.O.B" is murdering women he has contacted over the Internet
Published: January 2007
Dropped $5 Bill Serial Killer Warning Email
Emails claim that a serial killer is tricking women into allowing him access to their vehicles by pretending to return a $5 bill that he says they have dropped
Published: December 2006
Another Hotmail Account Closure Hoax Email
Email claims that your Hotmail account will be closed down unless you send the message to fifteen other Hotmail users
Published: November 2006
Bebo.com Closing Down Hoax
Email claims that social networking site bebo.com is closing down and warns that recipients will be charged $10 per month to keep their accounts if they do not forward the message to others
Published: August 2006
Mr Clean Magic Erasers Contain Formaldehyde Hoax
Email forward warns that Mr Clean Magic Erasers contain formaldehyde and can pose significant health risks to users
Published: July 2006
Email Forward Claims Jamie Bulger Killer Linked to Perth Child Murder
Email message claims that the person who raped and murdered a young child in Perth Western Australia is actually one of the boys who killed little Jamie Bulger in 1993.
Published: June 2006
Swiffer Wetjet Pet Death Email Rumour
Email forward claims that household pets have died as a result of licking floors cleaned with the Swiffer Wetjet cleaning system
Published: June 2006
Thieves Leave Women Naked in Restrooms Hoax
Email warns that thieves with guns are forcing women to strip naked in shopping mall restrooms in order to steal valuables and escape before the victims can raise the alarm.
Published: March 2006
Formosan Termites in Mulch Warning
Email forward warns recipients that cheap mulch currently being distributed and sold across the United States originated from debris left by the New Orleans hurricanes and may contain Formosan Termites
Published: March 2006
Panadol Extra Kidney Damage Warning Hoax
Message warns that a specified batch of the pain relief medication, Panadol Extra, has been "exposed in the heated area" and can now cause kidney damage after small doses
Published: January 2006
Car-Jacking Scheme Warning - Paper on Rear Window
Email forward warns of a new car-jacking scheme in which paper is placed on the back window of parked cars as a ruse to get a driver to leave his or her vehicle so that the thieves can easily steal it
Published: December 2005
Premium Rate Phone Fraud Hoax
Email forward claims to be a warning about premium rate phone scams that can result in victims being charged £20 or £50 per minute or £100 for fifteen minutes
Published: November 2005
Australian Terrorist Attack Warning Hoaxes
A number of emails and text messages warning about impending terrorist attacks are currently circulating in Australia. None of the messages that I have seen cite credible sources nor are they backed up by police warnings or mainstream media reports.
Published: November 2005
MSN Messenger 500,000 Signatures Hoax
Email forward claims that MSN will start charging a monthly fee for its Messenger service if 500,000 "signatures" are not received by September 14th, 2005
Published: August 2005
112 No Signal Mobile Phone Call Diverts to Satellite Hoax
Email claims that dialling 112 on a mobile phone will divert to a satellite signal and reach emergency services even if no signal is available
Published: July 2005
RCMP Warning Hoax - No Headlights Gang Initiation Myth
Email forward, supposedly from the RCMP, warns about a gang initiation that involves shooting at drivers who flash or signal a gang member driving without headlights
Published: July 2005
Another London Attack Hoax Email
Email claims that the London Metropolitan Police are preparing for another terrorist attack on the London underground
Published: July 2005
AOL 100,000 Signatures Hoax
Email forward claims that AOL will start charging $15.00 per month for instant messaging if 100,000 "signatures" are not collected by July 2005
Published: April 2005
HIV Infected Blood in the Ketchup Hoax
Email claims that HIV infected blood has been placed in the ketchup dispensers of fast food outlets
Published: October 2004
Reusing Plastic Bottles Causes Cancer Hoax
Email claims that reusing plastic bottles can lead to the ingestion of cancer causing chemical agents
Published: August 2004
Subway Terrorist Attack Hoax
Email claims that a terrorist attack may occur in a US City on Friday, 1lth June, 2004
Published: June 2004
Glade PlugIns® Fire Hazard Hoax
Email claims that houses have been burnt down by Glade PlugIns® air fresheners
Published: June 2004
Don't Flash your Lights? Gang Initiation Myth Hits London
Message claims that drivers are in danger from gang members participating in a violent initiation ritual
HIV Needle Hoax
Emails falsely claim that HIV infected needles are being deliberately placed where they can cause injury to unsuspecting members of the public