Anyone with a Facebook account (okay, so yeah, everyone) will have had some form of email, message or warning about a dangerous 'hacker' named Jayden K Smith.
The message will go something like this:
“Please tell all the contacts in your Messenger list, not to accept Jayden K Smith friendship request. He is a hacker and has the system connected to your Facebook account. If one of your contacts accepts it, you will also be hacked, so make sure that all your friends know it.”
Who is Jayden K Smith and should we be worried?
Short answer - no, the message is a hoax
Some people claim to have received a friend request from someone named Jayden K Smith, but experts guess these/this accounts have been inspired by the now viral Facebook message and not the other way round.
A website called Snopes has made a name for itself as a trusted and respected fact-checking and myth-busting website. Snopes investigates online claims just like the Jayden K Smith story.
The expert opinion is that the message is indeed, false.
The message is actually part of a long-running hoax, explain Snopes.
"Variants of these messages are circulated endlessly, with different names swapped in and out as various pranksters decide to play jokes on people they know by inserting their acquaintances’ names and addresses into the warning in place of the existing information."
"The most common variant of this hoax is one that warns the reader not to accept Facebook friend requests from 'hackers' purportedly named 'Christopher Davies' and 'Jessica Davies,' otherwise one of the two will wreak some unspecified havoc by being able to 'FIGURE OUT UR COMPUTER’S ID AND ADDRESS.'"
While Snopes has written this one off as a hoax, it is not recommended that people accept friend request online from strangers.
Speaking to ABC, social scientist Dr Daniel Angus said that it's impossible for someone to hack you just by becoming your friend.
"A hacker needs to steal your password or gain access by obtaining other account details that would allow them to reset your password," he said.
However, it is possible that hacker could want to become your friend to get access to your photos and personal information that you are making publicly available online.
"Hackers can use this profile data to try to make attempts at identity theft," Dr Angus continued.
Facebook has multiple measures to detect scammers and hackers. You can read more about it on their website here
There are two things you can take away from this situation.
One is that anyone who is actually named Jayden K Smith will be filling pretty persecuted right about now.
Number two, be very wary of the information that you share online and through social media.
Use this as an opportunity to update your privacy settings and make sure you only accept friend requests from people you know in real life.
And if possible, hug someone called Jayden K Smith, because they've had a rough week.