The Stupid Internet Hoax Circulating About The Sydney Siege Is Actually 13 Years Old

Getty / Dan Kitwood

A viral terrorism hoax is being circulated on social media in the wake of the Sydney siege.

The post, currently doing to the rounds the on Facebook, reads:

“My brother in law found a wallet on the ground about 1-2 months ago. He told me he called the number that could be found inside the wallet and the person who came to collect it looked like one of the isis members. When he collected his wallet he told him “here’s a tip don’t go to Sydney in new years even or maybe Christmas.”

Police have confirmed they have received no such reports and believe the message has been designed to create fear in the community.

In fact according to, the hoax has been circulating the internet for 13 years, reportedly first distributed via email on October 6, 2001 following the 9/11 terrorism attacks.

Since then it has evolved and reappeared every couple of years in line with events which threaten national security.

The hoax has included versions that specifically warns against the drinking of Coca-Cola after a certain date, to text messages stating that “A Jewish woman gave a tip to a Muslim taxi driver and out of appreciation he warned her not to go to Manhattan next week Wednesday.”

The NSW police have asked people not to share the hoax and asked that if anyone who has information about possible signs of terrorism to call the National Security Hotline on 1800 123 400.

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