In this month alone (June 2015) Action Fraud has received 533 reports of ticket fraud relating to gigs, concerts and sporting events.
Of the 533 reports, 228 mentioned a company called Circle Tickets which has recently ceased trading online. Circle Tickets was advertising tickets for Taylor Swift, Fleetwood Mac and Ed Sheeran. The 228 reports are with the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau (NFIB) for analysis and assessment.
Statistics from NFIB show that 33% of crime reports related to ticket fraud in 2014 happened in the months May, June and July. This is largely due to the number of UK festivals and high-profile concerts taking place during these months.
Get Safe Online has recently joined forces with the NFIB and Gumtree to warn you to be careful of ticket fraud at this time of year.
Get Safe Online recommend the following tips to make sure you protect yourself
- Buy tickets only from the venue box office, promoter, official agent or reputable ticket exchange sites.
- Remember that paying by credit card offers greater protection than with other methods in terms of fraud, guarantees and non-delivery.
- Double check all details of your ticket purchase before confirming payment.
- Do not reply to unsolicited emails from sellers you don’t recognise.
Before entering payment card details on a website, ensure that the link is secure, in three ways:
- There should be a padlock symbol in the browser window frame, which appears when you attempt to log in or register. Be sure that the padlock is not on the page itself ... this will probably indicate a fraudulent site.
- The web address should begin with ‘https://’. The ‘s’ stands for ‘secure’.
- If using the latest version of your browser, the address bar or the name of the site owner will turn green.
Further protection advice
- Ensure any third-party payment services (such as WorldPay) are secure before you make your payment.
- Safeguard and remember the password you have chosen for the extra verification services used on some websites, such as Verified by Visa.
- In the event that you choose to buy tickets from an individual (for example on eBay), 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.
- Always log out of sites into which you have logged in or registered details. Simply closing your browser is not enough to ensure privacy.
- Keep receipts.
- Check credit card and bank statements carefully after ticket purchase to ensure that the correct amount has been debited, and also that no fraud has taken place as a result of the transaction.
- Ensure you have effective and updated internet security software and firewall running before you go online.
- Watch out for e-ticketing fraud, whereby offenders can sell multiple tickets online that appear legitimate yet when you attend the event, the ticket is invalid as someone has already been admitted.
Read more on the Get Safe Online website.
Please note: Action Fraud is not responsible for the content on 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.