ActionFraud - National Fraud & Cyber Crime Reporting Centre - Call 0300 123 2040

Fraudulent tickets reported loss £2.7m last year

New research shows that 21-30 year old festival goers are most likely to be victims of ticket fraud this summer.


You’ve waited months to see your favourite band play, your bags are packed and you are ready to head off for a weekend of fun. However, it’s not until your ticket doesn’t arrive just before the big day that you realise something is up. Or if you do receive your tickets, they may not be the genuine article costing UK fans over £2.7 million in 2012.

The research from Get Safe Online and the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau (NFIB) revealed that 46% of fraudulent tickets were bought online, and 75% of all victims first made contact with fraudsters on the internet. Victims then went on to either purchase tickets online or in person.

Unsurprisingly, the festival season is the worst time for ticket fraud, with over 47% of all fraudulent tickets getting reported in July and August and 53% of all of these reported ticketing crimes are for music events. “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,” said Tony Neate, CEO,

Jamey Johnson, Head of Action Fraud said: “To avoid disappointment, anyone wanting to buy tickets for an event should only buy them from trusted websites and check that the website’s url is that of the legitimate ticket seller. If you’re in any doubt at all then call the company on a known phone number instead.

Be very wary of ticket offers for ‘sold out’ events as these situations are exploited by fraudsters, and if you’re unsure then leave the website immediately. If you have lost money to a ticket scam, report it to us and help the police identify the fraudsters behind these scams”

Be extra vigilant this summer when purchasing tickets and follow this simple advice:

  • Only buy tickets from the venue box office/promoter/official agent or reputable ticket exchange websites.
  • In the event that 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 – so if you’ve got one, and the seller accepts it, use it.
  • Before entering payment details check the link 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’.
  • Do not reply to unsolicited emails from sellers you don’t recognise.
  • If you think you have been a victim of fraud you should report it to us.

For further information please visit Get Safe Online's website.

Please note that Action Fraud is not responsible for the content of external websites.

To report a fraud and receive a police crime reference number, call Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 or use our online fraud reporting tool.

Related links

How to report a fraud
Why contact Action Fraud?
What we do with your information

Most shared articles

Related articles