Egypt’s top mufti has issued a fatwa saying that buying Facebook “likes” is prohibited under Islam.

The religious ruling has been made because the practice is considered a form of fraud and deception.

Grand Mufti Shawki Allam regularly issues all sorts of fatwas, usually in response to questions by Muslims seeking religious guidance in matters related to even the most trivial issues.

The logo of Facebook displayed on a smartphone (Dominic Lipinski/PA)The logo of Facebook displayed on a smartphone (Dominic Lipinski/PA)

The questions are asked of the Dar al-Ifa, the Sunni Muslim institution in charge of religious rulings, mainly based on the Muslim holy book of the Koran and the sayings of the Prophet Mohammed.

The mufti posted on the institution’s Facebook page earlier this week that it is “religiously prohibited” to pay someone to click a “like” on a promotion.

Mr Allam said “it is deceptive”, citing Mohammed’s saying: “He who deceives is not of us.”