As tickets for some of the most popular summer festivals go on sale this week, the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau (NFIB), supported by Live Nation, is alerting music lovers to the threat of online ticketing fraud.
The NFIB is designed and run by the City of London Police to identify serial fraudsters and better protect society from the threat of fraud.
Major festivals across the country are expected to sell out quickly, and the NFIB is concerned some of those missing out on sales from official websites may, unknowingly, end up using fake websites to try and buy tickets.
Students and young professionals are most vulnerable to this crime, with fraudster’s online sales pitch designed to persuade them to pay for a ticket they will never see.
Live Nation, which is one of the world’s largest online concert search engines, has identified Hyde Park summer events Hard Rock Calling and Wireless as favoured targets of the fraudsters.
Ticketing fraud costs millions
Last year ticketing fraud was estimated to have cost the UK £168 million, with half a million victims losing £80 on average.
Since becoming operational last year the NFIB has received 856 reports of online ticket fraud via Action Fraud. This information has already helped generate a major City of London Police investigation into ticketing fraud.
Spotting the scams can be difficult, with fraudsters using official looking domain names, producing professional websites with social networking links and listing London addresses and telephone numbers.
So when buying festival tickets online the NFIB and Live Nation recommends using the following guidelines:
- go to the official festival website to find out exactly where tickets are being sold
- be wary if previously advertised sold out tickets are on sale
- research the company online
- check they have a real world presence, for example, a registered UK landline phone number. This can be checked in the BT phonebook
- look out for platform telephone numbers starting 070 or 004470. These can be set-up on the internet and answered anywhere in the world
- check they are a registered company with Companies House
- check ticketing forums to find feedback from people who have purchased tickets from the website
- be cautious on how you transfer funds.
Read more on the NFIB’s website.
Please note: Action Fraud is not responsible for the content on external websites.
To report a fraud, call Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 or use our online fraud reporting tool.