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Don’t fall for it: Facebook hoax warns of hacker’s friend request

NEW YORK — A Facebook hoax is making the rounds again, urging readers to avoid accepting friend requests from a nefarious stranger intent on hacking into their account as soon as they’re connected on the social networking site.

Making the ominous warning even more viral, the message comes with a directive to let your friends know about the hacker because, the post says, if your friend accepts the nefarious request, you will be hacked, too.

But none of this is true.

For years, various versions of the hoax have circulated. Different iterations have named Jayden K. Smith, Anwar Jitou, “Maggie from Sweden,” Tanner Dwyer, Bobby Roberts and several others as phoney hackers, according to the myth-debunking site Snopes.com.

The message typically follows this format, saying:

“Please tell all the contacts in your Messenger list, not to accept Anwar Jitou’s friendship request. He is a hacker and has the system connected to your Facebook account. If one of your contacts aceepts it, you will also be hacked, so make sure that all your friends know it. Thanks. Forwarded as received.”

Accepting someone as a Facebook friend won’t compromise your account. Still, you should only friend people you know, like family members, friends, coworkers and classmates.

And as always, don’t click on links that look suspicious, are unsolicited or are sent to you by someone you don’t know.