What do the Golden State Warriors, Hamilton and Enrique/Pitbull have in common?
They are some of the Hottest Tickets on the Market!
Buying tickets that don't exist from fraudsters is one of the most common online scams, and one that people increasingly fall for. Fortunately, it is relatively easy to protect yourself as long as you follow some basic safety protocols.
- Refuse to be rushed – scam artists often try to rush their victims into making a decision. A sense of urgency is a warning sign you may be getting hustled
- Meet in person – bring a friend and meet in a public location (e.g. library, coffee shop)
- Never wire money – ever!
- Use a payment method that comes with protection – unlike wire services, PayPal comes with buyer protection policies
- Guard your personal information – do not share personal information online with strangers or download attachments that can harm your computer
- If the offer is too good to be true, it’s probably a scam!
So, how do you go about buying tickets for the big event?
If possible, always buy tickets from the venue itself
- Use a ticketing agent contracted by the venue to sell tickets at face value, plus a fee
- Purchase tickets from well-known ticket agents, such as Ticketmaster, StubHub or VividSeats
Discussion forums and online marketplaces, like CraigsList, have been an increase in scams. However, if you choose to go this route, be aware that tickets are filtered into two categories – “ticket by dealer” or “ticket by owner.” Tickets by dealer means the posting is from a professional ticket broker and will redirect to a broker website. This option is far more trustworthy than purchasing from a ticket by owner. Tickets by owner means an individual, for whatever reason (e.g. illness, absence, etc.), is selling ticket(s). If you choose to use this method, SCPD recommends:
- Select anonymous email address when posting a new advertisement;
- Do not meet the person alone – bring another adult;
- Arrange a public meeting, during daylight hours in a location with lots of foot traffic and/or surveillance cameras. For example, if you are selling a desk, meet the prospective buyer at a local coffee shop before inviting him/her to your home to see the item. If you do not feel comfortable, do not invite the person to your home;
- Accept or pay for the item with cash, only. Do not accept, or pay with, a cashier's check, money order or personal check.
Conducting transactions with people locally rules out a number of scams. Individuals from other states or countries, and using other methods of payment, has the potential to expose you to fraud and gives the other party anonymity, which limits the actions you can take against them.
Finally, if you come across a post that you believe is a scam, flag it with the online marketplace so it can be investigated.