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Lessons and stories from the front lines of fighting identity theft.


New Warning About Airline Ticket Fraud

Sep 14


Now you have one more thing to worry about when it comes to flying. This poor woman just discovered airline tickets on her credit card statement for a trip out of the country that she never even took. Because the tickets were purchased in another country with her U.S. – issued credit card, the case is one of international identity theft.

Ads for airline tickets flood the Internet and newspapers, not to mention rewards coupons, vouchers, drink tickets, etc.  I’m sure a handful of these sellers may be legitimate, but buying tickets like this is really risky. You should be especially careful whenever you buy airline tickets from anyone other than the airline or an International Air Transport Association (IATA) approved agent. These agents carry the universally recognized IATA logo and you can ask for proof of it. Also, if you do decide to buy the tickets from an outside source, be leery if they ask you to pay in some random way. One guy I read about actually sent gift cards as payment for tickets. No surprise…the tickets were no good and the thief walked away with the cards.

The sad thing about this whole airline ticket scam is that the people who think they are getting hot deals are actually making ticket prices go up. According to an August 6 New York Times article, ticket fraud costs the world’s airlines up to $500 million a year. Who do you think is absorbing that?  Yep…it’s you. So basically, I guess the best advice I can give you is this: When buying airline tickets, go ahead and look for the best bargain, but keep in mind that if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

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