The moment Melbourne dad realized he’d been scammed: ‘He burst into tears’

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Mark Curtis couldn’t believe his luck when a Facebook friend offered to sell him four taylor swift concert tickets, He had known that friend for 10 years and he could not believe his luck.

“I couldn’t get a ticket at this stage at all,” Mark, 46, told 9Honey.

He and wife Crystal were eagerly looking for tickets for themselves taylor swift-crazy daughter Kendall, 11.

Mark says he had just gotten off his night shift when he saw the message.

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Mark couldn’t believe his luck when a Facebook friend contacted him offering to sell him four Taylor Swift tickets. (Ticket Dealer/Supplier)

“Of course you get very emotionally swept up in it and your common sense goes out the window and then they just pull you in and suck you in,” he confesses.

He messaged his Facebook friend back and said he wanted to buy two of them for his wife and daughter.

taylor swift ticket scam melbourne dad
‘Of course you get too emotionally swept up in it and your common sense disappears.’ (Ticket Dealer/Supplier)

“He said yes, no worries but he needed the money quickly so I paid him,” says Mark.

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Mark transferred $618 for two tickets.

“Then he messaged me and said, ‘I can’t just send you two, I have to send all four, can you have them?’

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Mark called his wife and she agreed to buy all four of them.

“And I went to pay [for the additional tickets] And I couldn’t access my account. It said that it has been closed. So I asked my wife to log in through their site to make the payment, but apparently as soon as I made the first payment, ANZ’s fraud team had already deemed it a scam account.

“They locked mine out and then as soon as my wife paid, they locked hers out too.”

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taylor swift ticket scam melbourne dad
At first the messages seemed legitimate. (Ticket Dealer/Supplier)

At this stage Mark still thought he had bought four tickets to the Taylor Swift Eras concert.

“Then they said I needed $75 per ticket to send it to them and I said, ‘Oh, that’s not right.’”

taylor swift ticket scam melbourne dad
Mark did not realize he had been scammed until the seller asked for additional payment. (Ticket Dealer/Supplier)

That’s when I decided to test my Facebook friend, asking him how they knew each other.

“And then the messages started going blank. I said, ‘This is a scam right?’” She got no response.

taylor swift ticket scam melbourne dad
Mark was heartbroken that he failed to secure concert tickets for his daughter. (Ticket Dealer/Supplier)

“The buck didn’t drop until they hit me with this processing fee and I said, wait, this is no good right here,” he says.

Ticket dealer claims Victorian government Major Events Act 2009 The move, aimed at deterring ticket scalpers, appears to be “having the opposite effect”.

On June 27, 2023, the Victorian Government declared the Taylor Swift Melbourne concert a ‘major event’ and therefore cannot be advertised or offered for sale for more than a 10 per cent increase on the original price and cannot be sold Could. Any other ticketing or event platform.

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NSW has a similar law Fair Trading Act 1987 Which regulates the supply, advertising and description of goods and services.

It was updated in 2018 to prohibit the resale of tickets to sporting or entertainment events for profit.

Similar legislation governs the sale of Taylor Swift concert tickets in NSW for the Sydney show.

“With no viable options to safely purchase tickets, fans are turning to the black market and social media in desperation,” Alex Coetzee, spokesperson. ticket dealer Said.

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sell taylor swift concert tickets
‘The money didn’t drop until they loaded me with this processing fee.’ (Getty Images for TAS Rights Mind)

“In contrast, trusted secondary marketplaces like The Ticket Merchant provide fans a reliable and secure way to purchase tickets with consumer protections in mind.”

Mark later learned that his Facebook friend’s account had been hacked by scammers who had sent messages to several of his Facebook friends offering to sell Taylor Swift tickets.

Some of his friends decided to check if it was him and independently contacted him to find out if the messages on Facebook were from him. They were not.

Taylor Swift
The ticket trader claims the Victorian Government’s law is ‘having the opposite effect’. (Getty Images for TAS Rights Mind)

“Common sense is gone,” he says. “It was just following your feelings. You want these things so intensely and then the penny drops and you realize you’ve been seduced. I’m usually hyper-cautious.”

Mark was able to contact ANZ and explain what had happened. ANZ opened their accounts later that night and refunded them the lost money.

“They resolved it within about 45 minutes and got us back our account within about two hours,” he says.

A few weeks later Mark was able to secure tickets for his wife and daughter for this Friday night. They waited until their daughter came home from school to share the good news, and Kendall couldn’t believe it.

taylor swift ticket scam melbourne dad
When his daughter reached home from school he surprised her with the news. (Ticket Dealer/Supplier)
taylor swift ticket scam melbourne dad
Mark’s wife and daughter have their outfits completely planned out. (Ticket Dealer/Supplier)

“Just the look on his face,” Mark says.

She started crying with joy and Mark breathed a sigh of relief that he was able to do this.

“It’s the greatest thing in the world,” says Mark. “Crystal is going in the red tour dress and Kendall is going in the lavender dress.

“They got the bracelets. They’re really excited and just being able to get them means a big thing to me.”

safety advice

  • For high-demand events, consumers need to proceed with caution. These events can attract fraudulent activities including ticket scalping, reselling at inflated prices and criminal behavior including scams.
  • The ACCC recommends that consumers purchase tickets from an authorized ticket seller to ensure that they purchase a legitimate ticket.
  • Purchasing tickets through social media is high risk, even if it is from someone you know, as accounts may be compromised by scammers.
  • Always look for secure payment options like PayPal or Apple/Google Pay instead of providing your credit card details to the seller. PayPal provides its users with information about scams Website, Scammers often ask you to pay by non-secure payment methods such as wire, bank or international funds transfer, money orders, pre-loaded gift cards, and cryptocurrencies. It is rare to get money sent this way back.
  • Be aware of the fact that scams exist. When dealing with uninvited contacts from people or businesses, whether over the phone, mail, email, in person or on social media, always consider the possibility that the approach could be a scam.

If you have been a victim of this scam, report it to Scamwatch Here.

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