The Queen has fallen victim to an internet death hoax – the second time this year.
A fake Twitter account, set up in the style of BBC News, posted the message: “BREAKING: Buckingham Palace announces the death of Queen Elizabeth II at the age of 90. Circumstances are unknown. More to follow.”
Twitter users, believing the account to be genuine, then shared the tweet exposing it to a wider audience.
The account, which has since been suspended, is believed to have been set up by a British teenager.
This is not the first time Her Majesty’s death has been wrongly reported. In August, Nigerian television among others took to twitter to report that Her Majesty had died, despite it being a fabrication created by an imitation news website.
Last year a BBC journalist tweeted that The Queen had died after being hospitalised at King Edward VII Hospital in London.
It is believed the journalist watched a royal death rehearsal, where the BBC practice what to do when HM passes away. The journalist was unaware that rehearsals were taking place and tweeted the news on social media before swiftly deleting them.
Many celebrities have fallen victim to death hoaxes online, including Bon Jovi, Celine Dion and Jerry Springer, however, it is still rare for the monarch to be a victim as people generally do not believe the reports.
It is perhaps understandable that people have been more gullible in the last few weeks. The Queen hasn’t been seen in public for over two weeks now after she and Prince Philip caught a heavy cold.
As a result, Her Majesty could not attend the annual Christmas Day church service at Sandringham.
The Queen didn’t attend the service as a precautionary measure due to her age. Her next public appearance is expected to be on January 1st for a Sunday morning church service at Sandringham.