Risky business: The biggest ticket scams of recent years
Buying tickets off sites such as Craigslist is certainly risky business. These tickets have often been found to be nothing but fakes, causing much embarrassment and disappointment for the individuals that end up being denied entry and questioned at the door. Three notable ticket scams to arise in recent years have targeted a Broadway musical, a popular outdoor festival, and even the Super Bowl.
Trouble on the Great White Way
Instances of ticket forgery to Broadway shows are rare, though they have been known to occur. One of the most recent examples targeted the highly acclaimed musical Book of Mormon. The comedy, written by the creators of South Park, opened to rave reviews in 2011. Unfortunately, the incredible popularity of the show made it a target for scam artists looking to make a quick buck. The possibility of forgery was first brought to the company’s attention when a group of eight found that each of their tickets, when scanned, were linked to the same mezzanine seat, despite being sold as separate orchestra tickets. It seemed someone had bought a single ticket and then made copies of it, changing the seat location on each copy.
Coachella, the popular outdoor music festival that takes place in Southern California every year, was the victim of a cyberscam by hackers who created a false ticket-ordering page. In this instance, a fake website was built to look like a login site for ticket-holders. They were asked to enter in their ticket information, which was then stolen from them by those who built the website.
Super Bowl prank
The 2013 Super Bowl was played between the San Francisco 49ers and Baltimore Ravens in New Orleans. One 49ers fan thought she had found a great deal on tickets to the game, paying $5,900 to see her favorite team play. After wiring the money to the account of a Craigslist seller, Sharon Osgood received an overnight package in the mail that contained no tickets, just a note that read, "Enjoy the game!!!! Goo Ravens!!! LOL." It was Osgood, however, who had the last laugh. After going public with her story, she received four free Super Bowl tickets from Ticketmaster CEO Nathan Hubbard, as well as an extra free ticket from the San Francisco 49ers franchise. This is rare instance of a scam story with a happy ending.