Festival-heads have been getting knocked back at the gates to concerts because of fake ticket purchases over the web.
Education student Alex Fry forked out $150 for a Future Music ticket only to be told at the festival gates that his ticket was bogus.
“I went onto Gumtree and saw the ticket selling for $150 when they retail for $170,” Mr Fry said.
“I usually don’t buy electronic tickets but I thought this one was a good deal so I though ‘may as well’ and bought one for me and one for my friend.”
At the Joondalup Lakeside shopping centre, on the Thursday before the festival, Mr Fry met the girl who allegedly sold him the tickets.
He said he already had a bad feeling the tickets were fakes and was frustrated when that was confirmed.
“At first I was really angry, mainly at myself because I knew I shouldn’t have bought them, but also because I bought one for my mate too, not just my own,” Mr Fry said.
He said he received a text from the girl later that day which read, “enjoy your fakes”.
After that, he learned that the girl’s phone number had been disconnected.
After the festival, Mr Fry reported the alleged rip-off to police.
“I went to the police but they said if her number was disconnected there was nothing much they could do,” he said.
“They said they had a few cases that day that were similar.”
Police spokeswoman Susan Usher told InkWire that her colleagues were aware of fake ticket transactions appearing over the last year.
She said the police would deal with each case individually but that most cases would go through the consumer protection arm of the state Department of Commerce.
However, Consumer Protection’s Director of Retail and Services David Hillyard said the police were the go-to agency to report fake tickets.
“We don’t get that many people reporting those situations to us,” Mr Hillyard said.
“Most people may want to go complain to the police about that.”
He said the best way to stop fake ticket sellers in their tracks was to use sites like Viagogo to buy tickets, rather than other websites.
“There are some other sites like Viagogo that act as intermediate outlets,” he said.
“They don’t actually pay the ticket vendor until that event has occurred.”
Mr Hillyard said Viagogo was an international site that was just starting to get a toehold in Australia.
Gumtree spokeswoman Niki Hennessey said buyers must always use their common sense.
She said if a deal looked too good to be true it probably was.