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Nichole Morgan Friend Request Hacker Hoax

Outline
Circulating social media message warns users not to accept a friend request from a person named Nichole Morgan because accepting her will allow her to hack your computer. The message includes a photograph of the alleged hacker.

Girl hacker

© Depositphotos.com/ antonio revi



Brief Analysis
The message is a hoax. It is just one more in a long line of very similar friend-request hacker hoaxes. A hacker cannot take control of your computer just because you accept a friend request. For a hacking attempt to be successful, some sort of file transfer or exchange of information must take place. Sending on this message and photograph may unfairly damage the reputation of an innocent person. Please do not share this hoax message with others.

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Example

ALERT!!!!! ALERT!!!!! ALERT!!!!!
Don't accept a friend request from
Nichole Morgan 43 years old, from EL Paso, TX and sometimes says from San Antonio Tx, Wa. or Fl, ....she is a HACKER. Tell everyone on your list cause if someone on your list adds her then she will be on yours too. She will figure out your computer ID and address, so send this to everyone on your list even if you don't care for them cause if she hacks them, she hacks YOU too. She is also noted for repeated sexual harassment and indecent private chatting. users beware!

PLEASE FORWARD THIS TO ALL YOUR FRIENDS!!!!!!!!!!

nichole-morgan-hacker-hoax


Detailed Analysis


According to this message, which is circulating rapidly via Facebook and other social media sites, users should not accept friend requests from a person named Nichole Morgan. The message claims that just accepting her friend request will allow this Nichole Morgan to take control of your computer and hack the computers of people on your friends list as well. It also warns that the woman is known for repeated sexual harassment incidents.  The message features a photograph depicting the supposed hacker.

However, the claims in the message are nonsense. In fact, the message is just a revamped version of a series of very similar hoaxes that have circulated via social media and email for years on end. The wording of this new version is clearly derived from earlier variants, including one that named a Christopher Butterfield as the supposed hacker:
DO NOT ACCEPT a friend request from a CHRISTOPHER BUTTERFIELD he is a hacker. Tell everyone on your list because if somebody on your list adds him u get him on your list too and he'll figure out ur computer's ID and address, so copy and paste this message to everyone even if u don't care for them cause if he hacks their email he hacks your mail too! SEND TO ALL FRIENDS. Copy and paste to ur page...

All such warnings are hoaxes. The messages suggest that just accepting a person - in this case Nichole Morgan - as a "friend" on your contact list will give the hacker access to your computer along with the computers of everyone else on your list as well. This is total nonsense. Cybercrooks use a range of tactics to trick users into relinquishing access to their computers. They might, for example, trick victims into installing trojan software that allows a computer to be controlled remotely. Or they might use a phishing attack to trick a victim into sending them personal information such as usernames and passwords, which would, of course, allow them to access their victim's account. However, even the smartest criminal will not be able to hack your computer just by being added to your contact list. For a hacking attempt to be successful, some sort of file transfer or exchange of information must take place. 

The Nichole Morgan version of the hoax is more heinous than most in that it includes a photograph of the person accused of doing the hacking and harassing. False messages such as this can severely damage the reputation of innocent people. The hoax may have been created by a person with a grudge against the pictured woman. Or it may have started as an amazingly ill conceived prank perpetrated by one of the woman's friends.

Sending on this bogus warning will do nothing whatsoever to help you stay safe online. Moreover, its continued circulation may hurt an innocent person. If you encounter this hoax message, please do not share it with others. And please let the person who posted it know that the message is a hoax.

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Last updated: July 31, 2013
First published: July 31, 2013
By Brett M. Christensen
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References
Christopher or Jessica Davies Hacker Hoax Warning
Christopher Butterfield Hacker Warning Hoax