Ticketmaster says it will investigate all suspicious ticket purchases for Harry Styles’ forthcoming world tour as it published an open letter to fans who claimed they had been unable to compete with scalpers when tickets went on sale last week.

Ticketmaster employed its Verified Fan platform in a bid to beat scalpers and bots in the general sale, but many fans appeared to feel duped when tickets for all 29 shows sold out in just minutes. Demand was high as the former One Direction star had chosen to play more intimate venues that had an average capacity of around 3,000-3,500.

Verified Fan works by requiring fans who plan to buy tickets to sign up in advance, and then only those fans are allowed to purchase tickets when they go on sale.

In an open letter, Ticketmaster said it believes 95 per cent of tickets went to real Harry Styles fans, with just 2,000 of more than 45,000 tickets having so far been reposted for resale. “That means less than five per cent of all tickets are posted on resale sites,” it added.

Ticketmaster said hundreds of thousands of customers attempted to buy just 45,000 tickets when they went on sale, and told fans that “even if you did everything right and pushed the button exactly at 10am, so did hundreds of thousands of other[s]”.

Click here to read Ticketmaster’s Open Letter to Harry Styles Fans 

However, after consultation with Harry Styles, it said that it is working to identify purchases that may have been made by scalpers.

“In order to get even more tickets to you the actual fans, Harry and his management have asked that Ticketmaster cancel any orders that violated our purchase policy,” Ticketmaster said. “We are actively identifying any orders in violation of our policies, which may result in some tickets being cancelled that are currently listed on secondary sites.

“If that happens, we will let you know how those tickets will be safely distributed to fans.

“We know that no matter the circumstances, it’s upsetting not to get tickets to support an artist, especially as much as you all clearly love Harry. We hope that having access to the facts makes it a little less frustrating. It has been so amazing seeing the fanbase be so supportive of each other. Thank you for your patience, your support for Harry, and most of all for being incredible fans.”