Cyber criminals cash in on David Guetta

Unidentified cyber criminals tricked fans into buying tickets at exorbitant rates for the Guetta concert.

Published: 12th March 2012 09:01 AM  |   Last Updated: 16th May 2012 06:33 PM   |  A+A-


BANGALORE: Weeks before the concert that rocked the city on Sunday, boards of ‘Tickets Sold Out’ were put up on the official website of the organisers. There were many fans who sat at home fuming in despair. Bangalore surely has caught on as the hot favourite for international gigs and concerts.

The city has witnessed some of the best international acts in the last few years.

As soon as the David Guetta concert was announced earlier this year, fans (read girls) went berserk and booked their tickets from the official website.

There were many bulk bookings but no eyebrows were raised until two weeks ago, when the organisers declared that the tickets were sold out completely.

Laying low, waiting for the tickets to get sold out, many unidentified cyber criminals tracked fans who hadn’t bought tickets yet from their Twitter and Facebook statuses.

They then started sending out mailers with links to websites where tickets were available. A handful of desperate fans logged onto the website and made the payment. “We had to undergo a long process to first register and then make the payment. We were told that the ticket will be mailed to us and a physical copy would be sent too. I had booked two tickets that were highly overpriced.

Each ticket cost me Rs 4550 but my friends really wanted to go, so I bought it,” said Aniketh Shastri (name changed on request).

The users had to fill in three pages with personal details and once registrations were complete, they were told that the ticket will be sent to them. Sadly however, instead of heading to the Cyber Crime Police Station that has been around in the city for over a decade, these people complained to a friend, who works as an ethical hacker.

“This is a common scam that is all over the online shopping world. They steal pages and often you can track them by the online payment gateway that they use,” said Kapoor, a ethical hacker. Meanwhile, it was later realised that many who had booked in bulk had kept their tickets safely, only to jack up the prices and sell them for more than double the original price, closer to the event night.

“There are people who bought more than 20 tickets costing Rs 1950 each.

They are now selling each ticket at not less than Rs 5,500.

It has become like a part time business, with bigger and better performances, this will only get worse,” said Phadnis, an online trade analyst. Fans on the other hand are fuming at this new trend, that would eventually make the brand name of Bangalore suffer. “An event of this caliber should have been planned better, if this continues, all the major artists will stop coming to India. The organisers should have simplified the process rather than making it so complicated and elaborate. But weirdly, all the precautions that the organisers took to avoid such misuse have failed. People are bound to take advantage when such events are planned. While online purchases should be encouraged, it should never serve as a platform for scamsters to make a quick buck,” said Priya Jain, a writer.

Even though most of these cases never reach the Cyber Crime Police, private detectives in the city have solved over 20 such cases of previous concerts and some have received complaints about the recent online ticket scam too.

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