HIGHLANDS RANCH, Colo (CBS4) Tickets to the summer Olympics may be the hottest tickets in the world right now, but as always some offers are too good to be true. Demand for many events is outstripping supply which is all scammers need to know to take advantage of desperate people.
It is estimated that there are some 200-thousand tickets still available. Most ticket transactions are done online and that has the scammers working overtime.
“I got an e-mail through my work suggesting that I purchased tickets for Olympic events which I know I had not purchased,” said Brad Gay, the target of what he feels was a scam e-mail.
The e-mail came from usateam.org, but that domain name is up for sale. Teamusa.org is the legitimate United States Olympic Web site. The e-mail also included a link Gay could click on to dispute the charges. He didn’t click on it for fear of malware or other unwanted additions to his computer. CBS4 tried clicking on the link and it was invalid.
“I just want to make sure people do not get scammed and fall for these kind of phony, phony offers,” Gay told CBS4.
There is an active black market for Olympic tickets. Just last month, the Metropolitan Police Service in London cracked down on illegal tickets by targeting 20 international Web sites and 970 individuals. Officials have created a detailed list of some of the known scams surround Olympic tickets. The list is 11 pages long. Some of the most common include e-mails informing you that you’ve won an Olympic lottery that you never entered. E-mails are also being sent to large manufacturing companies asking them to pay large fees to provide items for the games. There are also e-mails informing you that you can apply for a job involved with the games for a fee.
“There are a lot of scams out there,” Gay said.
London2012.com has a list of unauthorized ticket resellers, these are the ones to avoid. And if you’re unsure about a Web site you can use the ticket checker also on london2012.com. Tickets are still available for basketball, beach volleyball, sailing, volleyball, and wrestling. Just make sure you know who you’re dealing with before you pay any money up front.
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- Written for the Web by CBS4 Special Projects Producer Libby Smith