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‘Rubbing their hands’: Billie Eilish fans warned as scammers flog fake tickets

Source: The New Daily

Fans of international pop sensation Billie Eilish are being warned to watch out for ticket scams before the musician’s Australian tour, with fraudsters set to target locals.

Cyber security firm NordVPN said on Tuesday that criminals are “rubbing their hands with glee” over the tour, with high ticket prices set to push people towards dodgy resale markets.

Adrianus Warmenhoven, a cyber security expert at NordVPN, said scammers are already trying to trick fans into losing money with purported cheap “pre-sale” and “resale” tickets.

“People tend to let their guard down whenever they feel like the safe option is too expensive or they missed a chance to buy tickets to their favourite performer’s show from an official ticket seller,” he said.

“This way, they expose themselves to greedy scammers waiting for someone to make a mistake, give out their data, or transfer money into malicious hands.”

Eilish, a nine-time Grammy Award winner, will tour Australia in February and March to perform her album Hit Me Hard And Soft, with 12 shows planned across Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane.

The scam warning comes hot on the heels of a surge in concert-related fraud when pop star Taylor Swift toured Australia earlier this year, with fans getting caught out by dodgy tickets.

Police said fans in Victoria alone lost more than $250,000 to fake ticket sales linked to the Eras tour in February, with the ACCC’s Scamwatch getting hundreds of reports nationwide.

NordVPN said scammers are creating so-called phishing websites that use similar web addresses to official ticketing sites in a bid to make fraudulent sales or steal personal data.

“Any website that resells tickets should be approached with extreme caution – they could be used to steal not only money but also payment card information or other personal information, which could be later sold on the dark web,” Warmenhoven explained.

Thankfully, there are ways to protect yourself from ticket scams before Eilish’s tour.

Nord says Australians should be wary of lower ticket prices than those advertised by official sources, pointing out that scammers try to attract victims with deals that are too good to be true.

“Resellers aim to gain a profit, so they cannot be selling tickets cheaper than official distributors,” Warmenhoven said.

Secondly, fans are being advised to learn to identify phishing websites, including by paying close attention to the web address, format of the site and the language used by the creator.

“If you enter a suspicious website, inspect it for grammar mistakes, flashy ads, or poor design,” Warmenhoven said.

“Usually, criminals don’t invest too much time in polishing every sentence or illustration.”

Lastly, the best way to avoid scams is to only purchase tickets from trusted distributors.

“Even if you are not buying your tickets directly from organisers or official distributors, make sure the distributor you choose is well known and has multiple reviews from its users,” Warmenhoven said.

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