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Ticketing among main targets for online scammers in Scotland

Tickets for major sporting and music events are one of the three main targets of online fraud and scams in Scotland, according to a new guide released by Police Scotland, the Scottish Business Resilience Centre (SBRC) and Royal Bank of Scotland.

The guide includes advice to ensure Scots are not caught out by the latest scamming techniques. As well as sport and music tickets, the prime targets for fraudsters are holidays and unsolicited emails.

The guide, entitled The Little Book of Big Scams, advises that Scots should only buy tickets from the official event promoter and be aware of anyone asking to pay for tickets via bank transfer.

Online fraud and scams in Scotland have increased by 69% since 2011-12, according to the latest Recorded Crime in Scotland Survey. The Little Book of Big Scams warns people of 19 types of scams to look out for, and offers practical guidance on how to spot them and what to do should you fall victim to one.

People are also advised to “be wary of paying for tickets where you are told someone will meet you at the event with your tickets as they may not arrive”. If the retailer is a member of the Society of Ticket Agents and Retailers (STAR), eventgoers are offered additional protection if something goes wrong, the guide adds.

Gary Ritchie, assistant chief constable at Police Scotland, said: “New scams are constantly emerging, so it is no wonder that we see businesses and individuals fall into a trap. Prevention and education are key, so this guide is packed full of practical advice.

“The impact can be emotional as well as financial, so I urge everyone to download and share the guide with family and friends, so they know what to do and who to call on if they become a victim of fraud this summer.”

Judith Cruickshank, Royal Bank of Scotland’s regional managing director in Scotland and the north of England, added: “The research showed that scams are becoming much more prevalent, but many of us think we are savvy when it comes to online fraud. However, scammers are using increasingly sophisticated measures to trick unsuspecting people.

“The Royal Bank of Scotland is dedicated to keeping customers’ money secure and offering people the support they need to help make themselves safer. By working together, we can help tackle online scams. The Little Book of Big Scams provides expert guidance on financial protection, identifying risks and finding solutions so that everyone is better prepared.”

Earlier this year, the SBRC and Royal Bank formalised a partnership whereby the bank offers access to SBRC-delivered cyber security workshops for its corporate and commercial customers following a marked increase in cyber-related incidents as detailed by the National Cyber Security Centre.