"When searching for tickets, it is easy to become blinded by what looks like a good deal," he said.
Tickets are often found in unregulated online auctions, online classifieds or bulletin boards using person-to-person sales, according to the BBB.
In the past year, there were 136 complaints filed with the BBB about companies in the "Ticket Sales – Events" category, and more than 32,000 people have contacted the bureau for pre-purchase information about ticket sellers, according to the statement.
The BBB is offering the following tips to avoid ticket-sale scams:
Check to make sure the broker is licensed in the state of Illinois and see if it is a member of the National Association of Ticket Brokers.
Avoid paying cash in person to a stranger.
Never wire funds for payments.
Check a seating chart provided by the venue to avoid purchasing tickets for nonexistent seats.
Pay with a credit card or other secure form of payment that allows customers to dispute charges if necessary.
"The most common way sports fans are getting scammed online is by either paying for counterfeit tickets or tickets that never arrive," Bernas said in the statement. "If something seems too good to be true, it most likely is."
(Source: Sun-Times Media Wire - Copyright Chicago Sun-Times 2014.)