Continuing with the seemingly never-ending saga regarding ticketing fraud for major events, Consumer Affairs Victoria (CVA) have issued another notice, warning punters of a recently increasing number of online ticket-selling scams.

The warning comes in the wake of the Australian summer festival season where heights of the issue have been felt amongst all sectors of the live music industry including large numbers of music fans falling victim to fraud, with the CVA saying they’ve received ‘hundreds of complaints’ recently.

As News Ltd points out, the issue has recently centered solely around music festivals but it is feared that the problem will soon spread to other large scale music events as well as events like the Melbourne International Comedy Festival, and theatre performances.

Acting director for Consumer Affairs Victoria, Phil D’Adamo, has stated that “scammers often advertise the tickets at a very low price or at face value,” and that consumers should “never hand over money to people you don’t know or trust, regardless of how excited you are at the prospect of scoring a ticket.”

Furthermore, the CAV has claimed that they have recieved over 200 complaints regarding ticket sales in the past year alone. D’Adamo goes on to point out that despite the possibility of the tickets being legitimate, “sometimes tickets aren’t transferable, or if the event goes bust the refund is likely to go to the original buyer.” “Never hand over money to people you don’t know or trust, regardless of how excited you are at the prospect of scoring a ticket.” – Phil D’Adamo, Consumer Affairs Victoria

The CAV warns of a method of internet frauds setting up fake user accounts on various classifieds and online auction websites wherein they set about charging up to $800 for ‘second hand’ tickets to sold out events. The frauds convince buyers to pay the large sums upfront to the seller whilst the tickets in question will often simply not be sent to the buyer or will have been featured on the advertisement only as a fake mock-up.

The issue surrounding ticket scalping in Australia isn’t a new one, with the problem escalating more recently after a 22-year-old NSW man faced court for the sale of fake Soundwave tickets after he pocketed nearly $17,000 from unwary fans across at least 60 suspicious transactions.

The incident is one of many that go unoticed by the law and has in turn prompted the NSW Government to look at plans to introduce new legislation to stop the resale of tickets at greatly inflated prices. The legislation is set to rule that tickets can only be forwarded on and sold at a cost within 10% of the original ticket price.

The NSW minister for Sports Graham Annesley says of the proposed legislation that “fans should be able to expect that resale takes place in a manner which does not expose the new purchaser to any undue risk of fraud.”

Music fans have begun to take it upon themselves to solve the problem, with a frustrated London punter setting up a twitter based ticket exchange business whereby concert-goers are able to sell and exchange tickets at reasonable rates without allowing scalpers to take advantage.
Ticket scalping is an unfortunate reality in the world of music events and festivals. Until a proper system is put into place, or an Aussie is able to come up with as good as an idea as our British compatriot’s Twicket, it’s safer to say don’t trust unauthorised sellers on the internet and always check ticket serial numbers, say Consumer Affairs Victoria. After all, it’s not worth your money being wasted on low-lifes with too much time on their hands.

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