Typing BFF on Facebook? Don't, it won't help
If you want to check how easy it is to spread fake news and misinformation on Facebook, the BFF hoax is a glowing example. Hundreds and thousands of Indians are commenting 'BFF' - short for 'Best Friends Forever' in urban parlance - on Facebook to find out if their profiles have been hacked or not. Wait, what?
Did your BFF turn green? No? Too bad
According to the rumor, which is going viral in India, the trick, formulated by FB founder Mark Zuckerberg, helps you test your account's security. Just type BFF in comments. If the text color changes to green, your account is safe. However, your account safety has been compromised if the text continues to stay black. You need to then change the password immediately.
Facebook's new feature colors some words
Of course, it's a rumor. Black or green BFF has nothing to do with account security. In fact, it shows if you have updated your FB app recently or not. If you have, BFF will turn green in accordance with Facebook's new feature that colors certain words. Congratulations, for instance, now shows in red. But if you haven't, BFF will stay black.
Why is the BFF hoax going viral in India?
The rumor owes its success to careful crafting, brilliant timing and smooth simplicity. Orchestrated at a time when Facebook's privacy policies are under global scrutiny, the hoax expertly exploits people's worst fears. Adding the founder's name further gives it legitimacy, urgency. Finally, BFF actually turning green for certain users is for all to see, fueling the speculation and curiosity.