Safe from Scams: Online counterfeit concert tickets

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- When the show you want to see is sold out, most of us turn to the internet. Unfortunately, so do con artists. A father eager to find Taylor Swift tickets for his daughters only to find it was a trick.

U2, Adele, Taylor Swift-- some of the hottest concert tickets going these days. Taylor Swift tickets caught one father's eye when he found an ad on Craigslist. "I came across this one posting where I thought there was really decent seats at a reasonable price and I made an offer to buy them, and I was surprised that I won," said the victim.

He doesn't want to give his identity for fear of becoming a target for fraudsters, but he wants other parents to hear this story. The seller gave him a phone number-- they texted and met to exchange the cash and tickets for the sold-out show. "They will take your cash and give you some sob story that their father is ill, their mother is ill or can't attend the concert, so they are just giving them away for face value."

The victim admits he let his guard down when he heard this story because it seemed normal. Plus he knew his girls would be thrilled. "They had their Taylor Swift shirts, and they were listening to Taylor Swift as we took the train in-- they were listening to Taylor Swift songs on the way in. They were so giddy and happy," he said.

But all of that changed when the family handed their tickets to the usher at the turnstile. They were counterfeits. "It was heartbreaking watching my kids cry and break down in tears because they couldn't go in."

Postal inspectors said the counterfeit ticket scheme is growing in popularity and consumers must be prepared. "With Craigslist, it's a buyer beware type of website as opposed to other reputable ticket sellers-- and the buyer has to be very careful because anybody can post on Craigslist," said Ashley Borofsky, US Postal Inspector.

"I'd go through the companies, I go through Ticketmaster-- whatever venue is selling that ticket," the victim said.

When the venue realized the family purchased fake tickets, they allowed them to buy some last minute available tickets.
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