How to: Instagram your ticket…. if you really have to

Instagram search #Ticket. Just try it, the results are quite interesting. You will be surprised with the amount of people who post pictures of their precious and valuable tickets online (Instagram, Twitter & Facebook) before the gig has even happened with a visible barcode, ticket number, name, date and venue, it is quite frankly shocking. This is effectively giving the ingredients to an individual literate in Photoshop to use your ticket! Incredibly there are a substantial amount of well-known examples of this exact type of fraud, yet as of 03/07/2017 a random search for #Ticket on Instagram yields a perfectly viable ticket for Linkin Park in 3 days time.

Example of naïve ticket posting

Not only is this persons profile public but they have also added “#Ticket” which makes it very easy to find! Clearly if one possesses the desire to post a picture of a ticket there are ways without sacrificing the integrity and risking someone else stealing it. See the ticket in the bottom middle row within the screenshot below where they have applied a filter to blur out the QR code.

This will sufficiently deter any potential theft. The top left individual has also prevented any manner of theft by covering the details of the ticket with their passport. These posts both convey the same message as the person attending Linkin Park, just without the risk that it will be stolen from them!

‘#Ticket’ search on Instagram 03/07/17

This, in conjunction with the ever increasing use of e-tickets has spurred a rise in ticket-related fraud in secondary markets. According to the National Fraud Agency in the UK, 1 in 12 people have experienced some kind of ticket fraud. To address the issue various startups such as Evopass and Dice have created paperless solutions; Evopass uses live tickets with dynamic security features that cannot be copied, screen-grabbed or printed. This helps protect both the artist, ticket seller and event-goer from ticket fraud. Therefore, the true experience of the event can only be experienced by the rightful ticket owner.

Bitcoin Blunder & Mistakes in Melbourne

Let’s look back to 2013. Bitcoin was beginning to gain traction, as national news stations picked up the story around the world. In effect it was becoming mainstream, but some security concepts were still new to members of the public. Mr Johnson of Bloomberg News showed off some newly gifted Bitcoin wallets in the form of QR codes to an audience of thousands. Cue Reddit users! The user, who goes by the name “milywaymasta,” took to Reddit to explain what happened.

“The guy that is hosting the series gave bitcoin gift certificates to the other two hosts. One of them opens up the certificate to reveal QR code of the private key,” he wrote. “They then proceeded to show a closeup of the QR code in glorious HD for about 10 seconds. Hilarious.” [1]

Very clear close up of the QR code

‘Milywaymasta’ ended up taking the bitcoin equivalent of $20 from the presenter, but subsequently transferred the sum back once he had created a new address. This was a perfect illustration of the importance of not showing private keys (essentially the password to your crypto currency wallet) and stark reminder of the importance of education when rolling out new technologies.

A similar incident occurred at the Melbourne Gold cup after one lucky punter posted a selfie with her winning betting slip. Crucially, it was before she cashed out her precious (and substantial) winnings. After posting the picture below to Facebook, which reveals the entire barcode of her slip, she was promptly robbed of her 900 dollars as she was beaten to the cashier. [2]

Winner poses with slip before cashing out!

Ticketing Turmoil in Trinity

So you’re thinking “I’d never do that” or “I’m never going to Instagram a ticket”, but think about it. As an event owner, radio station or even academic institution have you ever posted a ‘Like and Share’ competition? In this like and share competition have you ever posted a photo of the ticket to Facebook to prove that the competition is genuine? If you have, and failed to properly covered up the identification elements of that ticket then you have firmly placed that ticket in jeopardy. Simple. Below we have taken the liberty to conceal all important features to that ticket, which had the potential to be duplicated and stolen. However, when these were uploaded they included a full view of bar code, serial number, date, venue and ticket reference. If you wouldn’t text those details to someone, why would you post in on Facebook?

Therefore, we recommend that you avoid posting pictures of your precious tickets before attending or promoting events! You have to consider the countless bad actors out there who will happily take a free ticket to an event, and you will be surprised as to how fast they can operate.

Remember, take caution. Cover up barcodes and QR codes when taking photos! It’s an easy solution which is so often overlooked. Evopass will eliminate this problem in the future with our novel paperless ticketing platform! More details can be found on www.evopass.io and on our Twitter account @evopass.

Enjoy your next event!

The Evopass Team