Swiftie in the making

A concert crowd watching Taylor Swift live on stage taking pics on their mobiles
Written by Lyn Lyons,

I am beyond excited, more than my girls! We are going to see Taylor Swift on Saturday in Edinburgh. I thought all hope was lost; I’d been waitlisted last year when the tickets went on sale. I checked the resale sites and the prices were extortionate starting at £350 per ticket and going into the thousands, but then I got the magic email saying I was no longer waitlisted and I had my code to buy tickets. Result!

I can see how it’s tempting to try other avenues when the main channels are sold out, whether it is resale sites or social media. But in reality, we just become sitting ducks for scammers.

A recent BBC article highlighted that Taylor Swift fans have been hit hard by ticket scams, losing an estimated £1m ahead of the UK leg of her Eras tour. According to a report by Lloyds Bank, more than 600 customers reported being scammed, with an average loss of £332 each, and some fans losing as much as £1,000.

Unfortunately, it's not just Taylor Swift fans who have been affected. Data from Action Fraud shows that £6.7m was lost to ticket fraud in the UK last year, including tickets to other events such as sporting events and travel tickets, but dominated by concerts/festivals such as Glastonbury and other artists touring such as Coldplay and Harry Styles.

Whilst the older generation is naturally more cautious when it comes to online purchasing and interaction, some recent self funded research by Gusto highlights the increased use of Social Media platforms such as Instagram or TikTok amongst younger consumers to build up financial knowledge. On the downside, these younger consumers are potentially more exposed to a number of scammer tactics including fake accounts (posing as friends or legitimate companies), fraudulent giveaways and more. They don’t always check the credentials of financial influencers but are often drawn to them because of how they present information.

There is however some good advice out there to protect consumers, whether it’s buying for music concerts or indeed anything online;

  • Do some research on the company you're buying from and only buy directly from reputable, authorised platforms
  • Using payment services such as PayPal or credit cards can offer a better chance of recovering money if you become a victim of fraud
  • Be cautious of bank transfer requests, especially those that come from social media adverts or unfamiliar contacts
  • Scammers often prey on our emotions, so it's crucial not to let feelings cloud our judgment. The guiding principle of "If it looks too good to be true, it probably is" is especially relevant in these situations.

It's disheartening to hear about fans losing not only their money but also their hope of seeing their favorite artist.  While I'm lucky to have the chance to see Taylor perform live, there is a lot of negativity and stress associated with buying tickets for events like this. Banks have taken many steps to make customers pause and consider before they make payments, but social media companies, where scams often begin, should also do more to prevent fraud.

We all want a ticket to somewhere, not nowhere.

“So, make the friendship bracelets, take the moment and taste it”
‘You’re On Your Own, Kid’ Taylor Swift

Lyn Lyons

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