Buyer beware: Attorney General issues warning about World Series ticket scam

CLEVELAND- A warning to Cleveland Indians' fans hoping to score tickets to the World Series.

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine is warning fans to beware of ticket scams ahead of the World Series, which begins Tuesday at Progressive Field. The Cavs also have their home opener the same night.

World Series ticket prices skyrocketed after Cleveland eliminated Toronto in the American League Championship Series on Wednesday night. “This is a very exciting time for Cleveland,” Attorney General DeWine said. “It’s also the kind of environment that’s ripe for scams, unfortunately. We just want Cleveland fans to be able to enjoy every moment of this, without getting ripped off.”

Earlier in October, a fan lost $280 trying to buy Cleveland Indians tickets on Craigslist. He reported that he communicated with the seller and wired money to buy two tickets, but the offer turned out to be a scam.

Attorney General DeWine said in a release, ticket scams often involve third-party individual sellers who are not associated with an event. The scammers may advertise on Craigslist, on other websites, or in person. After consumers pay for the tickets, they receive either nothing at all or tickets that are counterfeit, stolen, or otherwise invalid.

Scam artists generally instruct consumers to pay using wire transfer, cash, prepaid money cards, or other forms of payment that are difficult to trace. Once the payment is transferred from the consumer to the “seller,” the money generally cannot be recovered.

To avoid ticket scams, Attorney General Mike DeWine advises:

Buy from reputable sellers. Deal with reputable businesses instead of third-party individuals who are not associated with an event. Before providing any payment or personal information, research a seller’s reputation. Check the return policy, and find out what would happen if the event is cancelled. If you’re trying to buy tickets from an individual, be especially cautious. Conduct an online search using the seller’s name, username, email address, or phone number along with words like “reviews,” “scam,” “fake tickets,” or “counterfeit tickets.” Even if you find no complaints, don’t assume the seller is reputable. Some con artists use fake names or bogus contact information.

Check the venue’s ticket policies. Find out how tickets are being sold and what kind of tickets will be accepted at the event. Increasingly, a number of venues and events primarily use electronic tickets.

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