Yesterday I was in the midst of using Facebook. All of a sudden, I received a message saying that I could not post any more because my computer had malware. I had to download Facebook's anti-malware.
|It looks like your computer is being affected by malware. We’ll help you fix the problem to keep your account secure and prevent malware from spreading to friends.|
|Malware is software that tries to steal personal information and causes problems when you use Facebook. Clicking or sharing links that contain spam can give your computer malware.|
I googled this message. I found many posters saying that they had received the same message, downloaded Facebook's anti-malware, and screwed up their computers thereby.
I also found messages from people saying that they had downloaded Facebook's anti-malware, and nothing changed. They still could not log on to their Facebook accounts, and they still received a message saying that their computer had malware.
So, I did not download Facebook's anti-malware. Rather, I ran Malwarebytes. Malwarebytes said I had no malware. I also ran a scan with my anti-virus package. Again, nothing found.
But Facebook would not let me log on.
I went to a different computer. At first, I was posting just fine. Then, suddenly, I received a message saying that I could not perform certain actions because my computer had malware.
Strangely, I could post messages and photos.
I could not, however, post links. I could not "tag" another Facebook user. I could not "share" a post.
I use Facebook enough that this was a matter of some import to me, so when my workday was over around five, I drove ten miles away and tried three different computers at a public library. In each case, I received a message that "your" computer and "this" computer has malware. Interestingly, at that same library, another user was using Facebook without any difficulty.
I drove further still, tried another computer, and got the same message.
I tried to contact someone at Facebook. I rapidly discovered that you can't contact someone at Facebook. It is, my google search informed me, impossible to contact a live person at Facebook.
Also, because of the block Facebook put up, I could not access Facebook's help page.
So, I am effectively barred from using Facebook.
I'd previously been banned for a short time for posting a photo of English soldier Lee Rigby in uniform and holding his adorable toddler son. It was a lovely father-son photo. Facebook found it offensive because it might offend Muslims. I wrote about that here.
I don't know if the bogus malware message is merely a glitch, or another way to keep people off of Facebook who say things that Mark Zuckerberg does not like. I generally reject conspiracy theories but one does wonder.
Since I can't access Facebook, I can't say goodbye to any of my Facebook friends. I can't delete my account. I can't do anything.
Thanks, Mark! Given that you are one of the richest men in the world, I can see why you can't afford to hire a few customer service representatives who'd address how you screw people over.