Trust & Safety
Trust & Safety

Examples of common scams

We verify all castings on StarNow, and most castings will be safe and professional experiences.

Unfortunately, scams do happen and the best method of protection is to educate yourself.

Here's our list of the most common scams:

Email scams

It's possible to be duped by a scammer even before the audition stage, by receiving an email from someone pretending to be an agent. Here's a real-life example of a scam email received by one of our members:

'Hello, How are you doing today ? I'm [name of casting professional], official model scout for [big brand agency]. We have a modeling job offer for [famous brand].

If you are interested in more details, request at [name]

Waiting to read from you.'

The email looks suspicious because:

  • The English is poor ('waiting to read from you')
  • The job description is vague – what kind of modelling job? Why is there no casting call on StarNow?
  • The sender is using Gmail, even though he claims to be from a top model management company.

If you receive a message on StarNow that you're not sure about, please click on 'Report this message' at the bottom of the message. Don't reply to the sender, and definitely don't send them any personal details or money!

Scam castings

Here is a real-life example of a suspicious casting:

Public Relations Officer: I presently have a good offer for you. I want to know if you are interested because we need models with working experience who will be on the magazine cover of next month's edition. Do let me know if you are interested in the Job. You stand a chance of making a reasonable $5000 from this deal to start,and even a noticeable fame...

Here are some signs that the casting is not real:

  • Poor English ('a noticeable fame')
  • Vague description – e.g. no magazine title given
  • No company website provided
  • Odd role title ('Public Relations Officer')

If you apply to a scam casting, you may be contacted by the scammer and asked to send them money in advance for an acting workshop, as a 'joining fee' or a 'caution fee'. You should not have to send money for a casting.

If you spot a suspicious casting or receive contact from someone asking you for money, please let us know and don't continue contact with them.

Scam agents

Occasionally, a scammer posing as a talent agent may contact you directly.

'Hi, My name is [name of casting professional], a Member of the Confederation of the Food and Drink Industries, personal assistant to the president of the Union of Advertisers in United States, Hong Kong and France. We are working on a job for some multinational companies in the United Arab Emirate, France and Hong Kong. I saw your photos on this site . I'd like to know if you are interested in modeling, for your photos would be displayed on billboards, magazines and all major international airports in the UAE and some countries in Asia...'

Here are some warning signs that the email is fake:

  • 'I saw your photo on this site' – 'this site' implies that the scammer is pasting the same message on multiple sites.
  • 'personal assistant to the president of the Union of Advertisers' – doesn't sound like the person who would be casting for models.
  • Asking the member if she is interested in becoming an international model. It is highly unlikely that an agent would contact you out of the blue with such a major offer.

Remember, if a casting or email offer looks too good to be true, it probably is! If an agent is full of flattery and talking of overnight international success, then they're probably not legitimate.

Google is your friend when it comes to verifying people and companies. Don't be shy to ask plenty of questions before attending a casting – if you're not getting any details, a warning flag should go up.

If they're asking for money, such as a joining fee or funds to cover a workshop, then hide your wallet and contact us.

Further reading

The following links are to external websites and the content is not controlled by StarNow.

How to avoid modelling scams - the Federal Trade Commissioner.

Scams in the entertainment industry - Screen Actors Guild.

Has this answered your question? If not, please contact us