Watch out: There’s a new hoax making the rounds on Facebook that claims your account has been “cloned.” This scam arrives in the form of a post or message from one of your existing Facebook friends saying that they’ve received a duplicate friend request from you — or someone claiming to be you. Of course, then the message encourages you to check your account and share it with all of your friends.
Cloned profiles are a very real threat on Facebook, but the company claims it hasn’t seen any unusual spike in these fake accounts.
“We haven’t seen an increase in incoming reports of impersonation (cloned accounts),” a Facebook spokesperson said. “The volume of these types of posts isn’t a good measure for how often impersonation is actually happening. For example, it is not accurate that ‘almost every account is being cloned,’ as one of these posts claims.”
The best way to deal with scams like this is to recognize it for what it is, then simply ignore it. Chain-mail hoaxes prey on people’s instincts to warn their friends about a scam, but when you refuse to share it, the problem stops dead in its tracks. And if you do legitimately believe your account has been cloned, you can report the fake to Facebook here.