This breathless “hacker warning” has recently joined the hundreds of other pointless, misleading and inaccurate “security alert” messages that circulate continually on Facebook.
This version warns users that a dastardly hacker that goes by the name of “Destiny Valle” is systematically – and seemingly at will – taking control of Facebook Pages and locking out their rightful owners. According to the message, the hacker has been taking over multiple pages by deleting existing admins and removing information so that it appears that she is the legitimate Page owner. The message implores people to share the information in order to stop the hacker from taking over even more pages.
However, the message makes no effort to explain how the hacker is gaining access to the Facebook Pages, nor does it supply even a shred of evidence to support the claim that such a “hacking” campaign is actually taking place. The message implies that this “Destiny Valle” can somehow gain access to a Page’s administration functions whenever she feels like it.
This is, of course, nonsense. If a Page owner followed a link to a phishing site and was tricked into handing over Facebook account login details, then a hijacker could use those details to access the Page. Or, if the Page owner clicked a link and subsequently downloaded and installed an information-stealing trojan, then the criminal may again be able to procure the Facebook login details and wreak havoc on the Page. And, of course, it is possible that some Page owners might be foolish enough to actually elevate “Destiny Valle” to admin status on request, thereby allowing her to have her way with the Page. But, even the most skilled hacker cannot simply hijack control of a page from its rightful owner at random whenever she feels the urge to do so. If account hijacking was that easy, Facebook and other such services would have been long since overrun by criminals and would be virtually unusable.
Another concerning aspect of this fatally flawed “warning” is that it actually names the supposed hacker. There are several people with the name Destiny Valle who have profiles on Facebook and others searches reveal that there are many people in the world that share that name or very similar names. But, the message makes no effort whatsoever to identify which particular “Destiny Valle ” it might be referring to. Nor does it provide any evidence whatsoever to support its accusations. Thus, many people that share the name may be unfairly impacted by this unsubstantiated rumour, especially if they happen to be Facebook users. Unfortunately, Facebook is becoming a perfect vehicle for such destructive nonsense.
This warning is reminiscent of another pointless Facebook message that warned that a person claiming to be from the boy-band One Direction was wresting control of Facebook Pages from their rightful owners.
Of course Facebook Page owners – and Facebook users in general – need to be careful and sensible with their login information and do their best to maintain the security of their accounts. Page owners should also be cautious when promoting people to admin status. They should ensure that they are well-acquainted with the potential admin and his or her conduct before allowing Page admin privileges. But, passing on misleading, wide-eyed nonsense like the information contained in this bogus warning will not help Page owners maintain the integrity of their accounts in any way whatsoever.
Here’s what the hoax message looks like:
ATTENTION!!! There is a hacker going around her name is Destiny Valle, she will delete all admins on your page then delete all proof that you are the owner and claim that she is the owner! She has been hacking multiple pages, … PLEASE COPY AND PASTE THIS ON EVERY PAGE YOU ADMIN! HACKERS MUST BE STOPPED!!! To stop her you guys need to share this and tell everyone so she can’t hack anymore pages.
Importance NoticeAfter considerable thought and with an ache in my heart, I have decided that the time has come to close down the Hoax-Slayer website.
These days, the site does not generate enough revenue to cover expenses, and I do not have the financial resources to sustain it going forward.
Moreover, I now work long hours in a full-time and physically taxing job, so maintaining and managing the website and publishing new material has become difficult for me.
And finally, after 18 years of writing about scams and hoaxes, I feel that it is time for me to take my fingers off the keyboard and focus on other projects and pastimes.
When I first started Hoax-Slayer, I never dreamed that I would still be working on the project all these years later or that it would become such an important part of my life. It's been a fantastic and engaging experience and one that I will always treasure.
I hope that my work over the years has helped to make the Internet a little safer and thwarted the activities of at least a few scammers and malicious pranksters.
A Big Thank YouI would also like to thank all of those wonderful people who have supported the project by sharing information from the site, contributing examples of scams and hoaxes, offering suggestions, donating funds, or helping behind the scenes.
I would especially like to thank David White for his tireless contribution to the Hoax-Slayer Facebook Page over many years. David's support has been invaluable, and I can not thank him enough.
Closing DateHoax-Slayer will still be around for a few weeks while I wind things down. The site will go offline on May 31, 2021. While I will not be publishing any new posts, you can still access existing material on the site until the date of closure.
Thank you, one and all!