This story was first published on November 5, 2015
According to a ‘serious threat warning’ that is currently circulating via Facebook, you should not approve a person that uses the name Daphne Bcsakai or Daphne Bcstahl as a friend or group member.
The message claims that the ‘person’ is, in fact, a ‘hacker/virus’ and that, if you approve it as a friend, it can take over your profile, access your accounts and remove you and other admins from groups that you operate.
Supposedly the name of the hacker/virus ‘person’ continually changes, but the last name will always start with ‘Bc or ‘Bs’. It thus suggests that you block anybody with a last name that starts with those letters. It asks that you help to warn others by copying and pasting the information and sharing it.
However, the claims in the warning message are nonsense and should not be taken seriously. In fact, this is just the latest in a long, sorry line of similar hacker hoaxes that have circulated in various forms for years.
The scenarios described in these hoax warnings are technically infeasible. The messages claim that your computer and online accounts can be compromised just by accepting a person as a friend. But, this is simply not how such attacks work.
Online criminals certainly do use a range of tactics to trick users into relinquishing access to their accounts. They might use a phishing attack to trick you into divulging your account username and password. This would allow them to hijack your Facebook account and they may indeed be able to remove you and other admins and take control of Facebook groups you operate. Or, they might trick you into installing malware that can allow them to access your computer and harvest personal information.
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.
You should indeed be wary of accepting friend requests from strangers. But, regardless of the names used in these warning messages, all are equally invalid and sharing them will help nobody.
An example of the hoax message:
WARNING, SERIOUS THREAT:
Do not approve anyone as a friend to your profile or a member of your group that goes by the name of Daphne Bcsakai or Daphne Bcstahl or similar – It is a hacker/virus that will take over your profile, access your accounts and private information, and if you have a group, he will remove your admins and your ability to run your group and access its members information.
The virus automatically changes the name, first and last continually, but the one thing that remains the same is the last name ALWAYS, at least so far, starts with the letters “Bc” (and “Bs”). So watch the names of everyone who requests approval and block anyone, male or female, whose last name starts with Bc/Bs.
If you get hacked by this ‘person’, let your friends and members know, so they can temporarily leave your group or profile to help protect their accounts and information. Please copy and paste this and share this with others.
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!