Home Affairs Department Confirms Cyber Incident Impacting Ticketmaster Customers

The Department of Home Affairs said it is aware of a cyber incident impacting Ticketmaster customers in response to claims it is part of a data leak expected to impact millions of customers globally. Industry publication CyberDaily reported that the personal details of 560 million Ticketmaster customers may have been leaked in a data breach claimed by a notorious hacker group ShinyHunters. It said 1.3 terabytes of customer data possessed by Ticketmaster including names, addresses, credit card numbers, phone numbers and payment details is up for sale. ShinyHunters is reportedly asking for $US500,000 ($750,000). 

A spokesperson from the Department of Home Affairs told the ABC it is "Working with Ticketmaster to understand the incident". It then directed further enquiries to Ticketmaster. Ticketmaster has not responded to the ABC's request for more details. 

Cybersecurity expert and director of several IT companies Mark Lukie said the hack will have have major implications for Australian customers. "This could mean the potential risk of identity fraud and we would assume this data would be used for phishing or impersonation attacks down the track," he said. "Users need to be very vigilant about their email and who they're responding to and not giving out any information to people trying to trick them." Mr Lukie said as the frequency of cyber attacks was on the rise, consumers would continue to be targeted. "From a commercial standpoint it's making them [hackers] lots of money and the more data these organisations have the more they become a target for these criminal organisations," he said. "We should all be looking for multi-factor authentication and additional resources to protect ourselves".

This also isn't the first time Australian consumers have been embroiled in a hack claimed by ShinyHunters. In September last year, 193,000 Pizza Hut customers' data was leaked when ShinyHunters allegedly accessed their personal information. Reports of the hacking come a week after LiveNation, which owns Ticketmaster, was sued by the US Department of Justice over claims it is running an illegal live event "monopoly". The DOJ alleged the ticketing giant's monopoly on the market was driving up prices for fans and pushing out smaller competition. The sweeping antitrust lawsuit was brought with 30 state and district attorneys-general. The company said it distributed more than 620 million tickets in 2023. Live Nation called the lawsuit a possible "PR win for the DOJ in the short term", but said that even if the DOJ is successful the lawsuit would have little effect on ticket prices. In 2009, Live Nation, originally an events promoter, announced the move to merge with Ticketmaster — the world's largest ticket seller across live music, sports, theatre — to create the conglomerate Live Nation Entertainment.

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