Here we go again.
A hoax is being unwittingly spread by Facebook users.
In fact, this particular hoax has been spreading for years in various forms. And right now it’s having something of a resurgence.
According to the hoax, simply posting a message to your Facebook account means that Facebook will be legally forbidden to use your postings or information without your permission.
Here is an example of one of the latest versions of the hoax message that is being widely distributed:
Due to the fact that Facebook has chosen to involve software that will allow the theft of my personal information, I state: at this date of January 4, 2015, in response to the new guidelines of Facebook, pursuant to articles L.111, 112 and 113 of the code of intellectual property, I declare that my rights are attached to all my personal data drawings, paintings, photos, video, texts etc. published on my profile and my page. For commercial use of the foregoing my written consent is required at all times.
Those who read this text can do a copy/paste on their Facebook wall. This will allow them to place themselves under the protection of copyright. By this statement, I tell Facebook that it is strictly forbidden to disclose, copy, distribute, broadcast, or take any other action against me on the basis of this profile and or its content. The actions mentioned above also apply to employees, students, agents and or other personnel under the direction of Facebook.
The content of my profile contains private information. The violation of my privacy is punishable by law (UCC 1-308 1-308 1-103 and the Rome Statute).
Facebook is now an open capital entity. All members are invited to publish a notice of this kind, or if they prefer, you can copy and paste this version.
If you have not published this statement at least once, you tacitly allow the use of elements such as your photos as well as the information contained in the profile update.
I’m afraid, however, that posting this status message to your Facebook account doesn’t make a blind bit of difference.
Some versions of the message claim that the messages have been given credence by BBC News or US TV channel reports. That’s simply not true.
In short - don’t believe everything you read on the internet, and do your research before you cut-and-paste messages like this to your family and friends. It’s possible that you are just helping a hoax to perpetuate.
If you don’t like how Facebook uses your data, then you can adjust your privacy settings and… if that’s not enough… you should perhaps permanently delete your account before more of your data is used in a way that you’re not comfortable with.
If you are on Facebook, and want to be kept updated with news about security and privacy risks, and tips on how to protect yourself online, join the Graham Cluley Security News Facebook page.