Buying event tickets online? Here’s how to make sure you’re not getting ripped off

Sometimes it feels like tickets to the hottest sports, music and theatrical events sell out in a heartbeat. When that happens, it’s natural to be frustrated and even tempted to look for spare tickets from an unauthorised reseller. 

Some individuals and websites are selling genuine tickets – but many aren’t. Even well-known sales sites such as Craigslist or Gumtree can be home to people who seem honest but are really just looking to make easy money off unsuspecting fans. It’s not uncommon for someone to pay a hefty price online for sought-after tickets, only to find that the tickets they receive are fake, don’t match the seller’s description or don’t arrive at all.  There’s no shortage of sad stories of fans spending huge sums for fake tickets

Don’t let this happen to you. Only buy tickets from the venue box office, promoter, official agent or reputable ticket exchange sites. Never deposit money directly into an individual’s bank account when buying tickets. And always make sure that the site you’re using to conduct the transaction is secure by checking that the URL begins with ‘https://’ and that the page displays a padlock symbol in the browser window frame, which appears when you attempt to log in or register.

If you suspect you’ve been a victim of ticket fraud, report it to Action Fraud, the UK’s national fraud reporting centre by calling 0300 123 20 40 or by visiting If you responded to an advertisement online or in a printed publication, report it to the website or publisher. For more information and advice on buying tickets safely on the internet, visit

Microsoft is a proud sponsor of the Get Safe Online initiative, a public-private collaboration dedicated to keeping UK citizens and businesses safe when using the Internet. To learn more about Microsoft’s efforts around to online safety, visit Trustworthy Computing

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