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Bogus Warnings - False Alert Hoaxes






  • Police Dismiss Sydney New Year's Eve Terror Warning as a Hoax
    According to messages circulating rapidly via social media and SMS, people should stay away from Sydney on Christmas and New Years Eve due to a possible terror attack.
    Published: November 15, 2014

  • '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

  • 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 (simon_25_@hotmail.co.uk) 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
    Published: 2004

  • 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
    Published: 2003


Bogus Warnings
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