LOS ANGELES — The Free Speech Coalition today issued an industry alert to performers about a bogus talent agent, using the pseudonym "Richard Smüle" and perhaps others, fraudulently implying a connection to Kink.com.
"The bogus agent uses a telephone number with the 336 (North Carolina) area code and promises upwards of $1,500 for 'advertising photos,' the FSC said. "The scam promises cash merely for ‘applying,’ and may be connected to potential identity theft.”
The FSC additionally said the following:
Any performers approached by an unknown person claiming to represent Kink.com should be extremely wary. If you are contacted — whether by phone, social media or email — by someone claiming to work for or with Kink.com, Kink recommends that you email firstname.lastname@example.org to confirm their identity and association.
The elements of this scam appear to be similar to several other incidents reported over the past few months. To protect yourself in any potential booking, the FSC recommends the following precautions:
If you have a licensed agent:
- Have them verify the booking, contacts and details.
If you do not have a licensed agent:
- Only communicate with new producers or agents through official company email accounts (if the person does not have an official account, ask them for a contact at the company that you can email to verify the relationship);
- Ask for references from other models, and verify them;
- Get contracts and other paperwork in advance and have it vetted by an attorney;
- Avoid negotiating or agreeing to shoots via sites like Whatsapp and Facebook, particularly when dealing with a new producer or agent; and,
- When in doubt, contact FSC.
We ask all existing performers, as well as those seeking to work in the adult industry, to always confirm the identity of any unknown director, agent or other contact by calling or emailing the company they claim to represent. Most companies have publicly available profiles. If you are unable to reach the company, or are otherwise hesitant to do so, please contact FSC, and we can help confirm.
The FSC is currently working to investigate this and other possible scams. We encourage anyone who has been approached, or has any knowledge of this scam or others, to report potential incidents to us so that we may alert the community, as well as law enforcement.
Fraud and identity theft are criminal offenses and can punishable by prison. Rape by deception — in which a person agrees to have sex under fraudulent pretenses, such as a bogus adult shoot — is a state felony.