Isis Door Knocking Warning Message is a Hoax
OutlineA '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.
Brief AnalysisThe claims in the message are false. Australian police have dismissed the warning as a hoax. There are no credible news or police reports about such activities. Spreading such false rumours causes fear and alarm in communities, wastes police time, and makes it less likely that genuine threats will be taken seriously. If you receive this false message, please do not pass it on to others.
There are members if Isis going door knocking on homes. They greet you with ‘Salam Alaykom’, and then pretend they are trying to collect money for orphans. They come with a black folder and ask you if you want to donate. I have just had one approach me at home just 2 hours ago. Please - do NOT Talk to them or open for them.
They are marking Christian homes. Please spread the word (not on Facebook) but via private texting or viber.
Warning Message Claims Isis Members Knocking On Australian Doors
The message claims that the Isis members are posing as charity collectors for an orphanage but their real motive is to identify and mark the homes of Christians.
The message names several Sydney suburbs in which the group has supposedly been active.
Message Dismissed as a Hoax By Australian Police
A report about the false warning in the Guardian notes:
New South Wales police have been moved to reassure Australians that text messages claiming members of Islamic State (Isis) are knocking on people’s doors and marking Christian houses are a hoax, as concerns grow about the threat the extremist group poses.And, NSW Police have posted the following message on Twitter, along with a screen capture of the false warning message:
Pls RT - Don't be fooled by social media myths exploiting the current political climate. #mythbusterFurthrmore, there are no credible news or police reports that support the claims in the warning in any way whatsoever.
Spreading This False Rumour Counterproductive
But, in fact, sharing the message is counterproductive. Circulating the false warning will generate unnecessary fear and alarm - and increase tensions - within communities. The warning may also waste the time of law enforcement staff who must field enquiries about the supposed threat from concerned members of the public. It could also lead to unfair retaliation against innocent charity workers and door-to-door sellers. And, spreading such misinformation can make it less likely that genuine threats are taken seriously.
If you receive this hoax message, please do not share it with others. And please let the sender know that the information in the message is untrue and should not be distributed.
Last updated: September 27, 2014
First published: September 27, 2014
By Brett M. Christensen