Special Report: Fake tickets are tricking Chicagoans

Chicagoans say they're getting taken by counterfeit concert and show tickets that look legit.

Bruce Taylor tells FOX 32 he couldn't wait to see "Bob Weir and Phil Lesh" in concert a few weeks back.

“I grew up around the Grateful Dead,” Taylor said.

He bought tickets to the Saturday night show weeks in advance, but at the last minute he decided he wanted to go to the Sunday show, too.

“So I've been looking on Craigslist, I can't really afford what's on StubHub,” Taylor said. 

There, he says, he came across a great deal and met up with the seller in person. But Taylor says when he saw the tickets, he had to walk away.

“They were selling fake, fraudulent tickets,” Taylor said.

Taylor wanted to warn other concert-goers.

“I reached out on Craigslist, posting ticket scam, buyer beware, and a lot of people have gotten back to me,” Taylor said.

People like Mark Harris, who wasn't so lucky. He bought 10 tickets for the same show.

“We went to the Chicago Theater to authenticate our tickets, and they turned out to all be fake,” Harris said.

Harris says the fake ticket sellers were convincing and even showed him a receipt.

“These weren't like, some garage-printed tickets that would jump out at you as being fake tickets, or potentially fake,” Harris said.

Former chief of detectives for Chicago police Eugene Roy says technology has changed the game of counterfeiting -- for sports games, concerts and events around the city.

“It's done relatively quickly, relatively easily, and the computer equipment that's required to do it is relatively inexpensive,” Roy said.

Roy says the first step to staying safe is to find a reseller online with a guarantee - like StubHub or SeatGeek. But if you're determined to buy in-person, Roy says, at best, you're taking a gamble.

“You're setting yourself up possibly to either be defrauded through the sale of a counterfeit ticket, or even worse, to end up being the victim of a robbery or another crime,” Roy said.

To stay safe, meet the seller at a police department - or outside the venue - where you can verify the tickets right there at the box office and don't let your thrill to score great seats cloud your common sense. 

“People are just, they're going to prey on your excitement for the show, which happened to me,” Taylor said.

Craigslist tells customers to deal locally and face-to-face with sellers to avoid most scam attempts, which is what both Taylor and Harris did.

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