From the comments — scammers in line?

Bill Cunningham in the comments says there is a bizarre scam going on in San Diego. Is this true? Beware!

A word of warning if you are standing in the pre-registration line, there were scammers working the line. They would come up asking for anyone who had one-day registrations, that ou could get in ahead of the actual line by registering with them. They had a bunch of preview night admission stickers which you have to actually look at closely to see were for preview night. They were collecting people’s registration barcode sheetsn giving them the stickers and telling them they were good to go. Of coure, they were not. My friends got snared by this, ad though security was very understanding and professional, and my friends had extra printouts of their passes, it was definately a scam.

I have no idea what the point was. I presume they were collecting printouts to scalp to others on the sold out days as though they were valid one day registration sheets.

Comments

  1. Torsten Adair says:

    Not bad… but couldn’t they just print up bogus sheets and sell those?
    with these crowds, how hellacious is the wait? Will the Con set up a checkin booth at the airport?
    and what’s the pecking order for entry? exhibitors are tops, then media, retailers? or are there more journalists than retailers?

  2. Bill Cunningham says:

    It was real, I was standing with my friends in the line when it happened, and walked with them through talking to security when they were stopped for not having valid badges. I already had a full week pass from Wed. night, but my friends were just here for the day. In hindsight I should have been way more skeptical, but the guys had official-looking admission stickers, they were working the line just like legit security, and we saw a few others bite first and it all appeared real. Afterwards we realized they weren’t really checking IDs, but at the time it seemed like an effort by the convention to streamline a massive line.

    Security told us they had a bunch of people tricked this way, and were trying to get someone out to the line to stop it. The line, at this point, stretched all the way around the H end of the center and back almost the whole length of the building, but was moving at a decent rate – probably a half hour wait. Security was scrambling to keep the line from blocking vehicle access ways in the back of the convention hall.

    Kindly, they didn’t force my friends to get back in line,but sent them up to the registration deck to talk to a supervisor. As my friends had extra printouts of their bar-coded sheets, it went pretty smoothly from there, but it could have been a disaster.

    I’ve been trying to figure out what the point of the scam was, and the only thing that makes sense is scalping. Those printouts don’t have any other useful info, no credit card numbers, no ssn, maybe the email address on there, but this seems like alot of effort to get some emails to spam.

    The only plausable angle I can think of is scalping the stolen passes on other days – the one-day printouts sent by email when you pre-register online don’t actually have the day printed on them.

    If anyone buys one of these they’ll be truly screwed at the reg area, as the barcode will scan for the wrong day and the tickets will probably already have been used. I’m sure the scammers don’t care, as they’ll already have the cash and will be gone.

    With two sold out days now, I’m sure there will be many people showing up to buy a day pass, not having heard of the sellout, who can be targeted.

    Hopefully security and/or the con will try to get the word out to folks waiting in line to be suspicious of anyone trying to “register” them on line, or selling day passes. I’m tempted to prowl out there and try to catch them myself if they try this. It has really annoyed me.

    With regard to the question about pecking order, there isn’t one, there are separate lines for Industry Professonals and reguar attendees.

  3. Must be another Bill Cunningham as I’m not there yet…

  4. Not That Bill Cunningham says:

    Indeed, there appears to be two of us. If the other Bill Cunningham is the writer, I’m not him! I’m just a regular Beat reader who’s at the Con.

    From now on if I post I’ll sign as “Not That Bill Cunningham”.

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