A hoax that claims actor Brad Pitt died is currently making its rounds on Facebook and other popular social networking sites.
Snopes.com, a website that weighs in on popular rumors, reports the hoax first surfaced on 21 September 2016, just two days after actress Angelina Jolie filed for divorce with Pitt.
Pitt and Jolie had been married for two years and had enjoyed a relationship that spanned more than a decade.
One Facebook variant of the hoax makes the actor's death look like a featured news story of FOX Breaking News.
That type of presentation has enticed many users to click on the story. But as the news item is totally baseless, it's not a surprise the story leads nowhere good.
Those who fall for the hoax come across a page that asks them to share access to their public profile with FOX Breaking News.
Don't do it! Agreeing to the permissions grants a malicious app control over your Facebook profile.
Anyone who doesn't agree to the permissions finds themselves redirected to a fake news story about Pitt's alleged death. One version reads as follows:
"Brad Pitt, 52, a multiawarded American actor and husband of Angelina Jolie, 41, shot himself in the head at a shooting range on Sunday. He was under significant stress because the couple 'were going through a divorce and he had a history of depression', sources have said."
Given this hoax, among others, it's important that employees follow corporate policies with respect to their use of social media. That includes using sites such as Facebook in company-approved ways and not clicking on links to suspicious web stories.
Organizations can best ensure employees follow those policies by leveraging an awareness training program that focuses on best social networking security practices.
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