In May 2023, Facebook users copied and pasted a brief post that talked about how "everyone is slowly getting hijacked," an apparent reference to malicious links that had been going around that could potentially cause a user to lose access to their account. According to the text, one remedy was to simply paste the viral post that said no permission was given for Facebook or Meta to do anything with a user's posts and photographs.
While we noticed that in the days prior to this story being published, several readers had indeed emailed us with screenshots of potentially dangerous Facebook posts that may have contained malicious links that could lead to an account being compromised, the message that users were copying and pasting was nothing more than a variation on an old hoax.
The bottom line: A Facebook post is not a legal document. Making a Facebook post to make one's intentions known is a bit like Michael Scott from the U.S. series "The Office" shouting, "I declare bankruptcy!"
Further, there's no evidence that Meta, Facebook's parent company, was going to do something unwanted with users' data and photos.
This text had no legal force and was not something that users needed to post.
Here's the full text that was circulating:
Due to the fact everyone is slowly getting hi-jacked, yeah hi-jacked not hacked, they're flat out hi-jacking our accounts, even more now.
Just in case Notice: An attorney advised us to post this. The violation of privacy can be punished by law. NOTE: Facebook Meta is now a public entity. All members must post a note like this. If you do not publish a statement at least once, it will be technically understood that you are allowing the use of your photos, as well as the information contained in your profile status updates.
I HEREBY STATE THAT I DO NOT GIVE FACEBOOK META MY PERMISSION TO USE ANY OF MY PERSONAL DATA OR PHOTOS.
Copy and paste, do not share.
Not sure of this, but worth a try.
In the comments of several of the posts that we reviewed, we noticed that account recovery scammers were advertising their "services" to anyone whose account had been compromised. Know that these users have no ability to get anyone back into their account. Their strategy is to ask you for a fee for what they claim they can do. Once they're paid, they run, never to be heard from again.
For more information on the history of misleading Facebook copypasta posts, we invite readers to read through the full lineup.