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Did your favorite celebrity reach out to you on social media?

Before you get too excited, are you sure it’s that person? Really sure? We’ve heard reports that scammers, who will try just about anything to separate you from your money, are now posing as celebrities on social media. They’re asking fans to send money for all kinds of supposed reasons – like claiming a prize, donating to a charity, or giving help of some kind. Some celebs do raise money for legitimate causes. But you want to be sure the cause—and the person asking you to support it—are real.

Imposter scams come in many varieties, but they all work the same way: a scammer pretends to be someone you trust to convince you to send them money. And that’s exactly what these celebrity imposters are trying to do.

So what should you do if a celebrity contacts you on social media and asks for money?

  • Slow down. Before you send money, talk with someone you trust.
  • Do some research: search online for the celebrity’s name plus “scam.” Do the same with any charity or cause they’re asking you to support—and learn more about charity scams here.
  • Never send money, gift cards or prepaid debit cards to someone you don’t know or haven’t met – even celebrities you meet on social media.
  • If you sent money to a scammer, contact the company you used to send the money (your bank, wire transfer service, gift card company, or prepaid debit card company). Tell them the transaction was a fraud. Ask the company to reverse the transaction, if it’s possible.
  • Report your experience to the social media site and to the FTC.

To learn more about imposter scams, visit

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The purpose of this blog and its comments section is to inform readers about Federal Trade Commission activity, and share information to help them avoid, report, and recover from fraud, scams, and bad business practices. Your thoughts, ideas, and concerns are welcome, and we encourage comments. But keep in mind, this is a moderated blog. We review all comments before they are posted, and we won’t post comments that don’t comply with our commenting policy. We expect commenters to treat each other and the blog writers with respect.

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  • We won’t post threats, defamatory statements, or suggestions or encouragement of illegal activity.
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November 19, 2019

In reply to by Angel Pedigo

his too happened to me with Keanu Reeves in hangouts until yesterday he corresponded with me a week and sent me love messages and that he is in love with me and that I am the only girl he wants and loves and said he was going to fight me because I have a friend and he wants to come and meet me in my country. He turned on a video camera and made me voice calls. On camera it seemed to be him but in the conversations there was a scary voice and then I realized he was an impostor. He asked me to go into the John Wick fan club and mom that I could win every two weeks for $ 3500 and be famous. I blocked him and reported him
June 01, 2020

In reply to by Angel Pedigo

I have been contacted by “Keanu” as well as well. No video chat, but he was trying to send me a pic of his passport and that was weird and his “credit card.” Then he kept asking me what kind of car I drove and if he could see pics of my apartment. Even after ignoring for a week this troll has been aggressively hitting me up. I am an actor and my acting coach was actually in a movie with him so I kept on referencing the person and that I actually knows when he knows him and seeing if they had any comment and as many times as I reference my acting go to costarred in a well-known film with him he had nothing to say. To me that was very interesting and a major red flag. I have block him now.
Alien girl
October 20, 2019

In reply to by brighamb

I’m dealing with this now. Just chit chatting. Now actually sent a video chat but it looks like a loop pre recorded. What was the page he messaged you from? He tried the fan card but I quashed that. He still chats but nothing else yet. I don’t think it’s him but my fiancé died. I’m lonely and enjoy the conversation. I told him this.
April 30, 2019
I was scam on Instragram were the imposter claim to be singer Bret Michaels which he was not after finding out i was being follow three times by his site bretmichaelsoffical.The scamer trick me into giveing my phone numbers and my email account and my world was change for ever their should be help for win this happens.The scamer copy my email with the singer name to get a google mail box were i text in the google chat room these people are sick .Today people have no front warning win you sign into facebook or any site this crime is on the rise. FBI need to step in and track this crimes that hurt people.The fraud scamer use a bandwidth voip phone system set up with a google sub s account.Its set up were it goes to a sign phone as a text so its hard to trace back this should be outlaw.Please be aware i still call this trash hope to have him or make a mistake nothing happens all i could trace was jupitar florida 5613168074.
May 07, 2019
I am getting scammed by a fake Kirk Hammett. He acted so nice and thanked me for being a fan. I have up a thumbs up and said thanks. He asked why I liked his music and gave him an explanation. He then asked if I could help out with his orphanage. I checked it out with his business manager and was told he didn't have an orphanage. I called the scammer out on his lie and he was angry and said it was private just between me and him. His band can't know about it. So I asked him what he wanted me to do with the orphanage, and he never gave me an explanation. Instead, he asked for my online banking account as he wanted to transfer money to me. I told him if he was serious about this, he can e-transfer. He really doe think he is Kirk Hammett has he will sent me a message everything Kirk Hammett posts on his twitter and Instagram. I feel the guy is stocking Kirk Hammett more than me. He does sent messages and even gave me a San Francisco telephone # where Kirk Hammett lives. I gave the number to the Metallica page, the Kirk Hammett page and even to Kirk Hammett's brother and I guy still keeps sending me messages. Go figure.
metal 1
May 21, 2019

In reply to by SAM

I just got the messages from Kirk Hammett too. I was totally messing with him from the get go. He asked me to join google hangouts. This is too much fun for me to not screw with this dude.
metal 1
May 22, 2019

In reply to by metal 1

Update* I called him out by saying he wasn’t a very convincing Kirk Hammett. I also told him to try impersonating a different celebrity because he wasn’t very good at this scamming thing... he never replied. Lol.
May 13, 2019
I'm not sure who contacted me, they said it was Keanu Reeves. He said he wanted loyalty and money.
May 13, 2019
I apologize, I didn't follow thru, the check mark appeared. I was contacted by Keanu Reeves. He asked for loyalty % money.
May 14, 2019
What if you were messaging one back and forth never being asked for money and all the sudden your message doesn’t send like they blocked you or something what happens then
Don't use your…
May 24, 2019
PLEASE HELP ME! I have been approached by someone CLAIMING to be Keanu Reeves. He is asking me to open an account on Empower, so that he can give me funds to contribute to his charity. PLEASE ADVISE ME WHAT TO DO. She assures me it is legitimate.
July 18, 2020

In reply to by Don't use your…

its not Keanu reeves its not johnny depp its not vin design its not any celebrity they are money grabbing scammers dont send any money block them.
Peggy-Sue 4
May 29, 2019
I was rather stupid. Although my instincts said no I was scammed by somebody claiming to be Gary Barlow of Take That. They claimed they were arranging a meet and greet with me, through Amazon, and said they wanted to meet me and my Daughter. They suggested l buy £600 worth of Amazon Vouchers, and to scrape the security strip photograph it and send it to them via MPS, message. I dont know why l did this, as has been said, You get caught up in the excitement of it all. I was going to the Take That Concert, and was on one of the Facebook pages, Gary Barlow FB Page. The short story is they started talking to me on message, and the rest is history. The money is a months wages to me. I bought the cards with a credit card. Now l feel really stupid, and naive. Now l just feel really stupid and very sick
Peggy-Sue 4
May 29, 2019
I was rather stupid. Although my instincts said no I was scammed by somebody claiming to be Gary Barlow of Take That. They claimed they were arranging a meet and greet with me, through Amazon, and said they wanted to meet me and my Daughter. They suggested l buy £600 worth of Amazon Vouchers, and to scrape the security strip photograph it and send it to them via MPS, message. I dont know why l did this, as has been said, You get caught up in the excitement of it all. I was going to the Take That Concert, and was on one of the Facebook pages, Gary Barlow FB Page. The short story is they started talking to me on message, and the rest is history. The money is a months wages to me. I bought the cards with a credit card. Now l feel really stupid, and naive. Now l just feel really stupid and very sick
diamond land
May 30, 2019

In reply to by Peggy-Sue 4

Peggy please don’t feel stupid they are scam artists , I fell for the same trap ,I was contacted by someone pretending to be the Rapper Rick Ross , the impostor was so convincing with poetry and sweet words of advice and personal selfies I felt locked in they even sent me a copy of their I.d but it was Rick Ross I.D I really felt like I was talking to Rick Ross and The impostor later even gave me access to their back account to Prove they were Rick Ross I was so sucked in I began buying them ITunes cards but only three times then they ask me to marry them I really felt I have met the one not because he was Rick Ross because he was there for me night and day and even comfort me through hard times like a real relationship I was so naive and Very vulnerable then I ask them to face time me they had every excuse in the book . I went along with it until they impostor was able to give me more clues they ask me to send money to joette Nicole Rhodes and Melissa Davis I later googled the address and the females Were listed in a very bad neighborhood some where in Hyde Park Massachusetts.
July 14, 2020

In reply to by Peggy-Sue 4

Iv been speaking to the so called Gary Barlow. Was asked nearly 3k to go on 3 day break but this is to pay his management company.
February 28, 2021

In reply to by Peggy-Sue 4

I did it too, twice, i didn't have a job then and sold things to do Steam Cards. I felt so humilated and stupid, lessoned learned.
May 30, 2019
I had someone just a few nights ago pretend they were Jack Nicholson and must have saw my post as a tribute to him on his official page .. he used Jacks profile pic and then FB messaged me.. Red Flags all the way first he didn’t spell his last name correctly.. then he started to tell me how he “cant do more for his fans” because he is bound my the terms of his contract and management handles his social media.. then it went to out of 22,000 fans I was “ special” and was really attracted to me for “ some reason” and then gave me his “ private “ cell number. .. the clincher to all of this is I did know Jack when I was in college. So I asked him some questions he would only know .. scammer couldn’t answer them.. I blocked my number and called the “ private number “ and it was one of those google voice things I just hung up and blocked the scammer .. I knew next it was going to be about money.. he was asking to many personal questions my full name, etc no way if he really was Jack he wouldn’t have to ask those questions to me
June 02, 2019
Hi.i also got Tom Cruise asked iTunes for his kids games.why when they are more than I did not.Also got Leonardo Dicapro asking for money for his foundation.which I did does feel nice to think ur celebrity would reach out.If it’s to good to be true it probably is true.please please do not send any money what so ever over the net!!!!!Thank u!!!!
January 30, 2021

In reply to by Crazycatlady

I too, have not only once, but several times, been contacted on Instagram from 'Tom Cruise.' He asks you to add him on hangouts, sweet talks you, then asks you for gift cards, or money. I too have had the story of the package arriving with a diamond ring-all I had to do was pay a 4,000 customs fee. Be careful, ladies. These impostors are very good. They will listen to your stories & tell you how much they love you... I wonder if the real Tom knows about these scam Tom profiles. His mgmt. should check all of his Instagram profiles.
June 03, 2019
I got played by a fake of Enrique Iglesias and a fake of Keanu Reeves.
Scotty ladyDon…
June 06, 2019
I came across this just this week. Instagram scammer. He or she was making out that he was a celebrity I like. They even had a picture of this celebrity’s driving licence as asked to prove who he said he was. Very cleverly deleted the photo within 10 seconds. After chatting for say 8 days, was asked to do an important favour. Would I buy a Amazon voucher for his nieces birthday as he was busy. Well I gave him what for and his marching orders. Reported to Instagram right away. Happy to say he been removed. But who is to say he/she won’t be back with another fake account.
June 06, 2019
I just had "Keanu Reeves" tell me I won $550,000 but I had to get a Google play card for $200 to activate the supposed check he's sending me. How does that work? No I did not do it, red flags big time.
June 06, 2019
Anyone had a scam to pick up a briefcase and hold it till the celebrity can come and get it?
June 11, 2019

In reply to by Andyp

Yes! Just recently. I knew this was a hoax ever since an individual posing as a celebrity added me on Instagram. In fact I didn't even know who this celebrity was but I did my due diligence. I decided to play along for fun to see how far this would go until he tried his manipulation routine on me and insisted I have a briefcase sent to my address for safekeeping until he comes to get it (yeah sure). I automatically chewed him out and deleted him. Do not fall for this scam as it is a form of "muling". Thankfully this individual did not have any of my personal info and I was one up on him.
June 19, 2019

In reply to by 2Smart

Who is he as celebrity imposter reach out to you. Can you tell me about the content of briefcase ?. I had a similar experienced. The requests on Instagram from celebrity impostors What is the Hangouts ID?
October 02, 2019

In reply to by Andyp

Yes, him or her or whoever they were. You know, anybody can text anything they want. Always very nice, personable conversations. But, would not ever call me, nor have we ever met. Oddly enough, when he did say he could meet, a week before he was scheduled to be in Europe. I have been a good fan for a very long time and don't want to lose that. But, will need to block be cuz some regular questions never answered. Someone on Twitter texted me that he was making believe he was a certain celebrity and that what he was doing was hurting people and he was a liar. I can't believe this particular celeb would scam anyone. Little problem is, he's always had a place in my heart. That's just the way it is...2 different worlds. Its embarrassing when you realize a person you don't know makes you feel special every now and then, is scammer . Glad I saw your text...I'll be blocking "the person" straight away
February 18, 2020

In reply to by Andyp

I am currently doing the briefcase thing as we speak....these people are somehow ghosting celebrities real accounts and making you believe it's a chat account for said celebrities. Then you are asked to go to Hangouts to chat more. In all the conversations, questions I asked were completely ignored. The briefcase thing is really a stunner. I cannot imagine so much money being untrusted to a complete unknown fan. I am still playing the game trying to get info out of them...we'll see what happens. fake celebrities
June 29, 2020

In reply to by Misty

This happened to me...!! Someone reached out to me saying he was Chris Hemsworth and asked me to contact him in Google hangouts...This happened today..July 29, 2020
August 10, 2020

In reply to by Andyp

Yes I did last year someone saying they was Leonardo DiCaprio said they got some money in a brief case wanted me to look after it for them wanted me to pay for it to be shipped to my address which stupidly I listened got scammed of £6000 I dont know what was wrong with me I wasnt thinking straight I was feeling depressed my dad was poorly with kidney failure and he has Copd . And I wasnt coping. I'd love to meet leonardo DiCaprio hes my favourite actor and environmentalist cant believe I've been so stupid. I only got £700 of my money back couldnt get the rest back .
February 28, 2021

In reply to by Chezzie

Oh I'm so sorry. Why did you only get a bit of money back and not the whole lot. To cope with my miscarriage and other things this TWD actor wanted me to do a meet and greet ticket and i sent $4500, with no job i had to sell things and asked my dad, dad still asks me what happened to these gifts i was getting but i keep changing the subject. It's humiliating.
June 09, 2019
This happened to my daughter. There is no convincing her that Will Smith and Chris Pratt weren't really messaging her on social media.
June 14, 2019
Right now a laughably fake Nikki Sixx is trying to scam my wife. I told her to play along but don't send the guy any money. We'll see how much of his time we can waste.
July 10, 2020

In reply to by TampaDude

I’m getting the same thing. Is it from Instagram? This fake Nikki Sixx wants me to buy tickets from his secretary. The real Nikki Sixx would never reach out to fans directly or ask someone they really wanted to come to a show to purchase tickets from them. What have they asked from your wife?
Shannen Arianna
January 04, 2021

In reply to by TampaDude

It's happening to me now. This 'Nikki Sixx' sweet talked me, hit on me. Then he started asking for Steam cards. Thing is, he showed ne his license. And i don't how, but it's real. I got it checked. They've sent me pictures that aren't on the internet. I fell for it. I was convinced it was him. I couldn't explain how he got the pictures he showed me. I sank into a depression following this. They are still trying to scam me. I don't even know if it's real or not.
June 15, 2019
This guy that has been trying to get me to send him iTunes said he is Keanu Reeves. He even sent a picture of Keanu Reeves passport with photo. When I said that I'd informed the authorities he closed down his accounts.
June 15, 2019
I AM A HUGE GEORGE STRAIGHT FAN!! I got a personal message from someone saying they were George Straight!! I replied back stop just stop you area fraud!!!! I let who ever it was know I was going to report them! so here I am be aware of everyone! If it is too good to be true trust me it is!!!!!!!! They did not realize how big of a George Straight fan I am!! I hope this helps someone!!
June 16, 2019
I am sure I am being scammed by a Leo DiCaprio imposter...this has been going on for several months..I wish someone could figure out where this schemer is really from and who he is.
September 15, 2019

In reply to by Nikijordan

I too am being scammed by a Leonardo DiCaprio imposter. This has been going on for about 4 weeks now, day & night. He wants me to arrange a "reservation" through his management which will cost me a lot of money. It has become very emotional which is very cruel. Also it is defamation of a good man's character. I have reported it.
June 22, 2019
Iv4 had a Trace Adkings send me tex over my phone he was in Facebook he ask for $400,00 for personal stuff Get a gift card Google pay and scratch off code send it to me.I didnt send I blocked and reported to Face Book. Now on Twitter few days ago Chris Young imposter popped on ask for $200.00 . He said lost his credit card . Send it now.. He told me of a site on line to get bit com .. ...I don"t know about that I said. hH said just do it.I have blocked on Twitter and hangouts .Also in Face book Willie Nelson imposters and Toby Keith tred sending me messages. I never replied back. The Facebook Security took the accounts down.. In Twitter was also a Travis Tritt. send me long letter posted it in message to me/ He had left Faith Hill and needed a good woman and the letter went on and on. I blocked it.. Be careful People, Most Famed People have videos saying they don"t ask for money .. They have management for this . They know of scammers and they want you to report them to security on social sites.Also they don"t use social sites for romance .Most say they never chat .If you go to their true page, there"s a blue check mark next to their names . There is no chat box on their page .No message to click to send on their pages..Thank you Hope this Helps you ..
June 01, 2020

In reply to by Bewildered64

Willie Nelson keeps trying to follow me on over 6 accounts now. Even his official account. And go to google hangouts. It’s a scam.
June 22, 2019
I received a IM through Messenger on Facebook yesterday from a Sammy R Hagar. At first I was confused and thought maybe this is legit. The conversation quickly went to asking my location, relationship status and how beautiful I was. Okay, thanks for the compliments. The person asked me to move the conversation to Whatsapp and provided me their cell or phone number. I looked it up and it was from Denver. After a few messages back and forth, I got the idea that this is an imposer. A super start musician isn't going to directly IM you on Facebook Messenger or WhatsApp. I blocked the person and reported to FB. I am sure this was leading into trying to scam me out of money by thinking I was a lonely lady. Try a smart lady.
June 25, 2019
i just got a message from supposedly Marie Osmond on instagram, it was so fake, almost like automated messages at first, then we chatted for a bit, and then she tells me about the hangout, when i get onto the hangout she then tells me about this VIP fan ID card for $100.00...but the difference is when i told her that i can't afford it she dropped it, no hostility or pushiness and continued with a normal conversation. But i think shes a fraud because 1) what person doesn't know that Jerusalem is not a country its a city in the middle east (in context to this conversation Jerusalem even came up!) i am not going to send any money don't worry...i was aware of the the problem before receiving this message.
June 26, 2019
I think I'm talking to a few scammers, not sure though. Armin Van Buuren and Ewan McGregor. This Armin person wants me to get a steam gift card and automatically raised my red flags. I want to believe these are the real celebrities but at the same time, I'm having doubts. Of course I'm not stupid to send money.... But its extremely low scammers impersonate celebrities.
February 20, 2021

In reply to by starz

Do you know the Ewan McGregor Instagram account name? I may be having the same thing. Ewan.mcgrregor
danny dog
June 26, 2019
hi just been scam out off 600 ponds in the uk got talking to a guy how said he was chris hemsworth for a few weeks and then he said he does meet and greet as a one off. then asked were would l liked to meet him all so so genuine even said he would by me a gift so please chris hemsworth does not talk on messenger as l found out the hard just money down the drain he even gives you a e mail for his personal assistant in the u s a called Dianne .ps dont do to hang outs.
June 27, 2019

In reply to by danny dog

hi, thanks for posting this as this also happened to me this week talking to Chris Hemsworth on messenger and I also lost £600 and spoke to the PA Diane in the US via email. I am also in the UK and it all sounded genuine too and he was going to buy me a gift also. Fortunately for me, they had a problem obtaining the money I sent and requested a second payment which I refused and that's how I realised it was probably a scam . Try and get your money back , the bank may be able to if there was a problem with the transaction at their end.