Singapore police said on Saturday that there were at least 35 reports of online purchase scams involving USS Halloween Horror Nights tickets between Aug 30 and Sep 29. The authorities said in a press release that this year's numbers are higher than the total number of 30 reports in 2016.
According to reports, the amount cheated in each case ranged from S$45 to S$7,000 and it totalled up to more than S$21,500.
The police said that the victims are being asked for advanced payments for the tickets, either as a deposit or in full, to be made to a local bank account. But, soon after the payments were transferred the sellers became untraceable and the items were also not delivered.
In some other cases, the culprits provided fake tickets and the victims only found out when they were denied entry.
The police also said that there has been a "significant increase" in reports of online purchase scams. "In August 2017 alone, there were almost 250 reports, which is about a 50% increase from the previous month," authorities said. "The majority of these online purchase scam cases were advertised on Carousell and Facebook."
The authorities have asked the public to be very careful about such scams and have advised them to adopt the following preventive measures that will help them to avoid such unfortunate incidents.
Members of the public are requested to purchase tickets only from authorised sellers and they should take note of all the terms and conditions of the ticket sale.
In case of advanced payments, the buyers should use shopping platforms that provide arrangements to only release your payment to the seller upon your receipt of the item.
The customers should also fix a physical meet-up with the seller in order to verify the authenticity of the tickets prior to making payment.
The members of the public may call the anti-scam helpline at 1800-722-6688 or visit www.scamalert.sg for more scam-related advice.