’15 Seconds’ Virus Warning

'Nobody can watch this for more than 15 seconds' virus alert.

Virus:   “Nobody can watch this for more than 15 seconds” video.


Examples:   [Collected via e-mail, November 2011]

If you get a video sent to you titled “Nobody can watch this for more than 15 seconds” delete it. Its a virus which will allow your FB to be hacked. It will look like someone on your FB has sent it to you. Please copy & paste.


Origins:   In November 2011, warnings began circulating about hackers invading the accounts of Facebook users by directing them to a video link featuring an image of a person with a large boil on his neck and a description that “Nobody can watch this for more than 15 seconds” (or “98% of people cannot watch this for more than 15 seconds”):

The obvious lure is a setup to goad recipients into proving their mettle by clicking the referenced link and watching the entire video (or at least more than 10 or 15 seconds’ worth).

Although not technically a “virus” which will “allow your Facebook account to be hacked,” the described video lure is one which employs clickjacking scam techniques and should therefore be avoided by users. Clicking the “Play” button to view the video initiates a process which leads the user into sharing the spammed message with their Facebook friends, thereby spreading it farther; the user is then instructed to “Complete a 30-second test to prove you are human” before being able to view the video (which doesn’t actually exist), a task that involves completing a number of surveys. Such clickjacking scams typically lead the user into providing a fair amount of personal information, consenting to receive telemarketing calls and text messages from a variety of companies, and signing up for “Reward Offers” involving paid subscriptions or other ongoing payments.

Last updated:   27 June 2014