Watchdog: Make sure the law is strict to stop ticket fraud Viagogo and StubHub

The Competition and Markets Authority has made recommendations to ensure that consumers are protected as music festivals and large-scale live events resume following Covid. It wants platforms to be prohibited from allowing resellers of tickets to make more money than what they are legally allowed to buy on the main market. The organisation also demands that platforms be held fully accountable for any incorrect information about tickets being sold.

CMA officials want to see licensing systems for platforms. This will allow an authority to quickly issue sanctions, such as taking down websites or withdrawing the right of a company to do business in this sector.

Although bulk buying tickets in advance of the fans may be illegal, professional resellers who sell the tickets at often outrageously high prices are not allowed to take swift or effective action under the current law.

The CMA also stated that similar issues can be found in rules that prohibit resellers from advertising tickets with incorrect information or selling tickets they don’t own. To combat non-compliance with the law, it has taken actions against secondary ticketing sites in order to correct any errors or provide accurate and relevant information to buyers.

These moves include requiring Viagogo to stop misinforming customers about the availability of tickets and warning them that purchasing tickets could result in their being refused entry to an event.

George Lusty is the CMA’s senior director for consumer protection. He said that “Over the recent years, we have taken strong actions to protect people who buy tickets online from resellers, and secondary ticket sites are now far better than those we saw before we took action by the CMA.”

“While there remain concerns regarding the sector, it is evident that the CMA (and other enforcers) have limits to their powers.”

Mr Lusty said: “With sports events and live music starting to recover, we ask the Government to act to strengthen current laws and establish a licensing system for secondary ticketing platforms.

“If adopted, these proposals will help prevent people getting ripped off by unscrupulous resellers online and we stand ready to help the Government to implement them.”

Which? consumer rights specialist Adam French. Which? Magazine’s Adam French, consumer rights expert said that: Rogue secondary ticket sellers selling tickets for astronomical prices, without giving clear information about their risks or warning of the possibility that they could turn people away at the doors have been exposed repeatedly. The Competition and Markets Authority is pushing for stronger protections for ticket buyers.

The Government should act quickly to implement the recommendations and move forward with plans for giving CMA greater powers to enforce consumer laws.

Publiated at Mon, 16 August 2021 22.53:47 +0000

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