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Thread: Stock photography websites wanting photo ID

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    Stock photography websites wanting photo ID

    Hi,

    I've got half way through signing up to a couple of stock photography websites now and they've both wanted me to upload a copy of my passport. I think the sites were iStockPhoto and Shutterstock.

    Has anyone else signed up to these websites? They seem like large, legitimate websites to me, but I'm still wary about them having a scan of my passport. I was thinking maybe I could blur out parts of it, but I'm not sure which bits they need to see and which I can blur.

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

    Thanks!



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    I'm not signed with either one, but they are both large, well-known names in the stock business but I've never heard of having to do that, and there's NO WAY that I would upload a copy of my passport (In fact, technically, you don't own "your" passport, it's the property of your federal government, so I'm not even sure if you could do that legally...) to a business' website.

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    Quote Originally Posted by grantjames View Post
    I've got half way through signing up to a couple of stock photography websites now and they've both wanted me to upload a copy of my passport. I think the sites were iStockPhoto and Shutterstock.

    Has anyone else signed up to these websites? They seem like large, legitimate websites to me, but I'm still wary about them having a scan of my passport. I was thinking maybe I could blur out parts of it, but I'm not sure which bits they need to see and which I can blur.
    So, let's see. You want them to enter into contracts licensing your content via a legal document, take your royalties and pay you cash money. Yet, for some reason you don't want to provide positive identification so they know who you are? Seems to have a pretty simple solution to me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by orljustin View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by grantjames View Post
    I've got half way through signing up to a couple of stock photography websites now and they've both wanted me to upload a copy of my passport. I think the sites were iStockPhoto and Shutterstock.

    Has anyone else signed up to these websites? They seem like large, legitimate websites to me, but I'm still wary about them having a scan of my passport. I was thinking maybe I could blur out parts of it, but I'm not sure which bits they need to see and which I can blur.
    So, let's see. You want them to enter into contracts licensing your content via a legal document, take your royalties and pay you cash money. Yet, for some reason you don't want to provide positive identification so they know who you are? Seems to have a pretty simple solution to me.
    There are plenty of other things online that I earn money from that I haven't had to provide ID for. I'm just sceptical because if they end up getting hacked or something, I don't want an image of my passport in the wrong hands.

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    Quote Originally Posted by grantjames View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by orljustin View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by grantjames View Post
    I've got half way through signing up to a couple of stock photography websites now and they've both wanted me to upload a copy of my passport. I think the sites were iStockPhoto and Shutterstock.

    Has anyone else signed up to these websites? They seem like large, legitimate websites to me, but I'm still wary about them having a scan of my passport. I was thinking maybe I could blur out parts of it, but I'm not sure which bits they need to see and which I can blur.
    So, let's see. You want them to enter into contracts licensing your content via a legal document, take your royalties and pay you cash money. Yet, for some reason you don't want to provide positive identification so they know who you are? Seems to have a pretty simple solution to me.
    There are plenty of other things online that I earn money from that I haven't had to provide ID for. I'm just sceptical because if they end up getting hacked or something, I don't want an image of my passport in the wrong hands.
    What is the worry with the passport? They are going to collect money and pay you most likely via a wiretransfer or mailing a check. All of this info contains the same and much more than your passport does. So if someone is going to hack their site, they could get plenty. Heck, all someone needs is your name and IP address and they can pretty much find anything they want. While you are right to be suspicious, do some research. If its a big name company with proper credentials, then I wouldn't worry too much. Maybe send them an email inquiring about this and what it will be used for.
    grantjames likes this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by grantjames View Post
    There are plenty of other things online that I earn money from that I haven't had to provide ID for. I'm just sceptical because if they end up getting hacked or something, I don't want an image of my passport in the wrong hands.
    I don't know many terrorists that sneak into countries with a printout of a passport page after hacking into 200 million dollar a year businesses.
    Arob likes this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by orljustin View Post
    I don't know many terrorists that sneak into countries with a printout of a passport page after hacking into 200 million dollar a year businesses.
    You're just taking the p*** now. Stop trying to make out I'm some sort of thicko when I was just asking for advice. I've always been told that passports hold sensitive data that you wouldn't want just anyone getting hold of.

    Either be helpful or go away.

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    Grant, I have been a member of iStock and Shutterstock for years. I have uploaded my Driver's License and Social Security info to both sites and have never had any issues. Ultimately, it's up to you. I should also mention that I have just sent a request to iStock to close my account. I have a small portfolio there (a little less than 100 items) and sales there have dropped dramatically in the past few months. That, and they dropped the percentage they share with artists, yet again. I have friends who have huge portfolios and are sticking around a while longer, but they too are experiencing a heavy drop in sales over the past few months.
    grantjames likes this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dnavarrojr View Post
    Grant, I have been a member of iStock and Shutterstock for years. I have uploaded my Driver's License and Social Security info to both sites and have never had any issues. Ultimately, it's up to you. I should also mention that I have just sent a request to iStock to close my account. I have a small portfolio there (a little less than 100 items) and sales there have dropped dramatically in the past few months. That, and they dropped the percentage they share with artists, yet again. I have friends who have huge portfolios and are sticking around a while longer, but they too are experiencing a heavy drop in sales over the past few months.
    Thanks very much for the info! Helps a lot.

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    Quote Originally Posted by grantjames View Post
    Either be helpful or go away.
    I was helpful. I told you you are dealing with huge companies that facilitate legal contracts and handle your money. They require positive ID of who you are to make sure things are working right. I only got silly when you started bring up "other sites". So, upload away.

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    Quote Originally Posted by orljustin View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by grantjames View Post
    Either be helpful or go away.
    I was helpful. I told you you are dealing with huge companies that facilitate legal contracts and handle your money. They require positive ID of who you are to make sure things are working right. I only got silly when you started bring up "other sites". So, upload away.
    Well my apologies then. I just felt from the tone of your responses that you were taking the mick. Things like that always get lost in translation on forums!

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    I've just received an email from "coca-cola" saying that my email address has won 1,000,000 lol!

    Amongst other details, they wanted, you guessed it: a scan of my passport!

    That's why I'm wary! If it wasn't possible to do things dodgy with just a scan of a passport, spammers wouldn't be asking for them in emails.

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    123RF requires id as well and maybe Fotolia - so if you're going to submit there, keep that scan.

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    i don't know about istock, but when i signed up for shutterstock, they asked for either a copy of my ID or my credit card info to veryify my address. I gave my credit card, since it's the same thing i'd use to buy stock anyway.

    so for shutterstock, i'd suggest doing that if you're uncomfortable with your ID.
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    Yeah better safe than sorry, but a US passport has less information on it than a drivers license. Unless they want to create a fake passport dont think they can do much with it.

 

 

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