Cost of ticket fraud rises to nearly 4 million

Police report shines fresh light on ticket scam industry

Cost of ticket fraud rises to nearly 4 million

Photographer: Mark HollowayVirtual Festivals on 15 May 2014

Festival-goers and music fans were among the biggest victims of ticket fraud last year with police reports peaking during the music festival season.

A total of 4,555 reports of ticket fraud were reported to police last year and, of these, 22 victims lost £10,000 or more. The association said scams were typically carried out over the internet.

Acpo's national co-ordinator for economic crime, Commander Stephen Head, told the BBC that the problem was getting worse.

"Millions of pounds were lost last year and millions more could go the same way in 2014." he warned. "Taking a punt on an unofficial seller, be it over the internet or face-to-face, is just not worth the risk."

Fraudsters use "fancy website and sharp sales techniques" to trick music fans into buying fake tickets, getsafeonline.org CEO Tony Neate warned last year.

"Criminals have a captured market of fans that will do anything to get a ticket, which makes festivals and concerts a prime target for fraud." He said.


The following pieces of advice can help festival fans avoid ticket scammers this summer:

- Only buy tickets from the venue box office, promoter, official agent or a reputable ticket exchange sites.

- If you choose to buy tickets from an individual (for example on eBay or a fan site), never transfer the money directly into their bank account but use a secure payment site such as PayPal, where money is transferred between two electronic accounts.

- Paying by credit card offers better protection than with other methods in terms of fraud, guarantees and non-delivery.

- Before entering payment details check the webpage is secure. There should be a padlock symbol in the browser window frame (not the page itself), and the web address should being with ‘https://’. The ‘s’ stands for 'secure'.

- Don't reply to unsolicited emails from sellers you do not recognise.

- If you think you have been a victim of fraud you should report it to Action Fraud, the UK’s national fraud reporting centre by calling 0300 123 20 40 or by visiting www.actionfraud.police.uk

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