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Viber 'Will Become Chargeable' Hoax


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Outline

Circulating message claims that messaging service Viber will start charging you to send messages if you do not send the information to ten people to prove that you are an 'avid user'.

viber will become chargable
©Depositphotos.com/ bloomua



Brief Analysis

Viber is not set to start charging users for sending messages. The message is just a new version of an old hoax. It is derived from a very similar hoax message that claimed that WhatsApp would start charging users who did not send the warning to others. Sending on this nonsensical message will help nobody.

   

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Example

Saturday morning viber will become chargeable. If you have at least 10 contacts send them this message. In this way we will see that you are an avid user and your logo will become blue () and will remain free. (As discussed in the paper today. Viber will cost 0.01€ per message. Send this message to 10 people. When you do the light will turn blue otherwise viber activate billing. Dont forget to send it back to me.


Detailed Analysis

Message Warns That Viber 'Will Become Chargeable'

According to a message that is being passed around by users of messaging app Viber, the service will become chargeable unless the same warning is sent to ten other people.

The message claims that, by sending the warning to ten people, you prove that you are an 'avid user' and will therefore not be required to pay a new per message fee.

The message advises that, after you have sent the warning, Viber's 'light will turn blue'. Supposedly, this blue light indicates that billing has not been activated for your account.

Message is Just a Silly Hoax

However, the message is an absurd hoax. Viber is not set to start charging users for sending messages. And, no company would ever be likely to force people to send on a silly message to prove that they are active users.

In fact, the message is just an amended version of another long running hoax that claimed that messaging service WhatsApp would start charging if users did not send on a warning. As the following example reveals, the two hoaxes are almost identical except for the change in the name of the app:

Saturday morning whatsapp will become chargeable. If you have at least 10 contacts send them this message. In this way we will see that you are an avid user and your logo will become blue and will remain free. (As discussed in the paper today. Whatsapp will cost 0.01€ per message. Send this message to 10 people. When you do the light will turn blue otherwise whatsapp activate billing.

Variants of This Hoax Have Circulated For Years

The WhatsApp hoax was in turn derived from much older hoaxes that have used the names of various other online services, including FacebookMSN, and Hotmail

All claim that users must pass on a message to prove that they are active users and thereby avoid fees or the termination of their account. This ruse is apparently quite effective, because online pranksters have used it over and over again for years.

Any message that claims that you must send on a warning to a specified number of people to avoid service charges or keep your account active is certain to be a hoax.

Last updated: June 11, 2015
First published: December 5, 2014
By Brett M. Christensen
About Hoax-Slayer

References
Viber
WhatsApp 'Will Become Chargeable' Blue Logo Hoax
Hoax: Facebook to Start Charging This Summer - Facebook Icon Will Turn Blue ( Or Gold)
MSN 18 Contacts Hoax
Hotmail Account Hoax