How to Avoid Scammers

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Every day, hundreds of scammers flood Facebook Event pages with tickets to shows, oftentimes at cheaper than face value, or offering a discounted price due to their inability to attend the show.  They claim their loss is your gain, but in reality, they’re going to pocket your money and move on to their next victim. 

There’s a lot of ways you can filter through these posts, however, and prevent you from being the next victim.  Let’s take a look at a few examples.

Here we have ‘Oduoye Sandra’ posting that she wants to get her money back for some tickets. Let’s investigate the profile a little more. Here is ‘Sandra’s profile.

It appears that this person, nicknamed “Classy” on her profile, works at ‘USA Airline Pilot’, has no location of where they have lived, or even current city, zero mutual friends, and a weird variety of photos.

Let’s see if we can find out what her friends are like, and if she is really someone who might have some tickets for sale for this event. After proceeding to her current profile photo, she has 4 friends who decided to give her a like on her most recent picture.

Here we have a friend who studied at a University in Nigeria (top left), a person who’s photos show her living in Nigeria (bottom left), another person who studied at a university in Nigeria (top right), and someone who studied at… you guessed it, a university in Nigeria (bottom right).  I wonder if they know that prince who was supposed to send me millions of dollars after I sent him a 100-dollar Amazon gift card to cover taxes.

I don’t think too much more has to be said about this profile not being legitimate.

Moving on, let’s look at another profile, here.

Here we have Vera George, who has tickets “up for sales (sic)” due to a tragic sudden illness with her son. Your first red flag should be the lack of grammar, but I’ll let that slide. We know not everyone on the internet is good with English, even the native speakers.  However, I wonder why she was deciding to take her family, young child included, to see Slander’s Alchemy Tour in October.

Clicking on her profile, there are again, no mutual friends, an account made just over a year ago, no location of where she lives or where she’s from, and the only photo’s of her appear to be two completely different people, and it looks like her toddler age child probably wouldn’t enjoy the heavy bass line-up anyways. Let’s check out that photo she posted back in July in the bottom left of this screen capture.

Again, a lot of her friends are all from Nigeria, so we have another obvious scammer.

I chose this second profile, because at the time I saw her comment, several people were already messaging her for tickets, when it took me about 30 seconds to realize this was a scam profile.

Sometimes the scammers aren’t always so obvious, so here are some things you can personally do to prevent being scammed. 

  1. Check the post grammar. Oftentimes, they will use what almost appears to be Google-translated phrases and words.  If you see “discount price, affordable price, kindly DM me and clarify message,” I would throw up my first red flag.
  2. Watch for family emergencies, or stories as to why they can’t go to the show. If they aren’t taking their family with small children to the Lil Wayne show in Phoenix, or any other long winded explanation of why they are willing to lose money on their tickets to get rid of them quick, it’s likely a scam.
  3. Check for mutual friends/reasonable number of friends. It would always be safe to purchase from people you know, or acquaintances, but when the profile trying to sell tickets has very few friends, or their friends are from out of State, or even Country, it’s likely a scam.
  4. Check for when the account was made. A lot of these profiles will be less than a year or two old, and if the entire thing consists of a few profile photo changes with almost no activity, then it’s probably fake.
  5. Check for current city. If the person you are buying tickets from claims to be from the other side of the country, or doesn’t have a location at all, ask yourself how they originally acquired tickets to a show that would require them to travel at length to go see originally. 
  6. Don’t use Venmo/CashApp, ask for Paypal goods and services or cash transactions for hard copies.  It’s hard to reverse the charges if the person is using these methods, and they will often take your money and block you.

    Finally, if you do find out a profile is a scam, do everyone else a favor and point it out. You may now know better, but there are other people out there who may not be the wiser.

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