According to a message that circulates via WhatsApp, SMS, and social media websites, opening a picture of Donald Trump suffering from a stroke will destroy all of the information on your phone and computer.
The message urges you to pass on the information to all of your friends and groups so that they will be forewarned about the supposed threat.
The Message is a Hoax
However, the message is just another hoax and its claims should not be taken seriously. There is no virus or malware threat like the one described. Nor, for the record, has Donald Trump suffered from a stroke. Versions of this hoax warning have been circulating since early 2017.
The hoax is reminiscent of a 2016 fake-news message that claimed that clicking a post about Donald Trump being arrested would install a virus. And, similar hoax variants have warned users not to open videos showing the Pope or Hillary Clinton dancing because doing so would launch a virus that would format your mobile phone.
Sharing such false information will not help anybody stay safe online. If you receive one of these messages, just delete it.
Do Use Caution When Following Links
While the ‘Trump Suffering from Stroke” message is a hoax, you should certainly use caution when following links in posts about celebrities or high-profile political figures such as Donald Trump. Criminals do use such messages to distribute malware or trick people into visiting scam websites.
Examples of the hoax message:
Urgent!!! Dear brothers & sisters, if you have received Pictures of Donald Trump suffering from a stroke, please do not open it but delete it immediately because it will destroy all info in your computer & handphone. Please pass this to all your friends & groups.
Brothers and sisters in the group:
Just received the picture if you received the “Trump Suffering from Stroke”, please do not open it and delete it immediately. Now it has been confirmed that this is a relatively young Filipino Internet youth. Attacking Chinese computers and mobile phones will cause the computer to lose all information. Please send it to each group and inform each other.