7 On Your Side: Tips to avoid ticket scams

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Friday, July 17, 2015
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HASKELL, NJ (WABC) -- Summer is a popular time of year for outdoor concerts, and there's nothing worse than showing up for the big show only to find out your ticket is a fake. And as scammers become more tech-savvy, it gets harder to tell if your have the real thing.

Taylor Swift may be the hottest ticket of the year, but some fans had no idea the troubles they were about to have because the phonies they bought were just that good. The rule used to be only meet sellers in person to avoid buying fakes, but as the local mom learned, scammers are so confident that they'll lie right to your face.

Amy Neuhard was crushed after paying hundreds of dollars to a scalper advertising on Craig's List for face-value tickets to the sold out concert at MetLife Stadium. The New Jersey nurse bought the tickets to reward her 12-year-old daughter Amelie after she aced her report card.

The tickets looked legit, with the TicketMaster logo on them. Before forking out the cash, Amy thought she checked everything, even the red code on the back of the ticket with the seat number.

"I thought that I was doing everything right by inspecting the tickets, getting a receipt, getting hard stock tickets, checking codes, checking prices, everything matched," she said.

But Amy says days before the show, she couldn't shake off her suspicion so she asked a MetLife Stadium ticket associate to take a look.

Everything except the bar code matched a legit ticket, and the uncanny counterfeiting is why the fake tickets business is flourishing. In January 2014, weeks before the Super Bowl came to MetLife Stadium, 7 On Your Side told you how to spot trouble.

"Sadly, they're getting better, and it's going to fool more people," Bergen County Sheriff Michael Saudino said. "My first recommendation is don't buy a ticket from someone you don't know. As good as the technology is, the bad guys get that technology too."

He recommends never taking the risk of meeting stranger and exchanging cash to save money.

"You might pay more at a TicketMaster, but it's like an insurance policy," he said. "You're guaranteed and won't be denied. That ticket is good, and it's well worth the piece of mind than pay a few extra dollars."

MetLife Stadium's rep recommends you buy only from authorized ticket companies like Ticketmaster or directly from the box office. And when you do land your tickets, don't post them on social media, because anyone can snap a picture, print it out and use your bar code to get into the venue. Then when you arrive, you'll be told your ticket has already been scanned.

Amy and her daughter did get into see the concert, as she lucked out buying tickets at the box office the day of the show.