TICKET SHARKS: 250 000 names sold on the black market

Personal information about the Head of the National Bank, Svein Gjedrem, skiing star Anja Pärson, and former PM Ingvar Carlsson was sold to black market ticket sharks.

ON THE BLACK MARKET: Without his knowledge, personal information on Svein Gjedrem, the Head of the Norwegian National Bank was sold on the black market. Names like his and 250 000 others are worth millions on the black ticket market. Photo: John T. Pedersen /Dagbladet
ON THE BLACK MARKET: Without his knowledge, personal information on Svein Gjedrem, the Head of the Norwegian National Bank was sold on the black market. Names like his and 250 000 others are worth millions on the black ticket market. Photo: John T. Pedersen /DagbladetVis mer
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||| (Dagbladet): Dagbladet can reveal that confidential lists with personal data concerning at least 250 000 ticket holders has been sold on the black market — by a trusted employee in the FIFA system.

The lists Dagbladet is in possession of contain the full name, date of birth and passport number of the unknowing ticket buyers — as well as detailed information about which games they had tickets to, and where they were seated.

Last week Dagbladet broke the news that 60 000 names were leaked and sold.

Today the newspaper can reveal that the total number has increased to 350 000 entries in the lists. 250 000 of these with full names and sensitive identity-information.

Huge fees Officially FIFA and their associates do everything in their power to stop the black market traders. FIFA have several times tried black market ticket companies in court.

WORTH MILLIONS: These are just a few of the lists available on the black market. Foto: John T. Pedersen/Dagbladet
WORTH MILLIONS: These are just a few of the lists available on the black market. Foto: John T. Pedersen/Dagbladet Vis mer

But Dagbladet can reveal that unfaithful servants in the FIFA system are in fact among those who make it possible for the black market sharks to sell several millions worth of WC tickets.

With the information they get from the lists, black market ticket sharks can get in touch with ticket holders and offer to buy their tickets — before they sell the very same tickets for huge fees on the black markets.

- Such leaks are so common that several countries refuse to send personal information to FIFA, a respected black market dealer says.

The offer Dagbladet has read several e-mails in which an employee in Match Hospitality, FIFA's official ticket provider, offers tickets lists for sale to a major player on the black market. Dagbladet has confirmed the seller's identity.

In April 2009 the seller writes:

- Did you receive the offer for the database you were interested in - 2,5 e per contact? (...) There is possibility to sell the contacts for separate regions too.

Then, on August 11, he continues:

- Now I am in the official sales of the vip areas for FIFA 2010 in South Africa, working directly for official FIFA provider MATCH.

- Hard to believe Jaime Byrom, chairman of Match Event Services and director of Byrom PLC, says he finds Dagbladet's revelations hard to believe.

- FIFA, MATCH and the corresponding LOC take every possible step to prevent the unauthorised sale of tickets, Byrom says.

SOLD: Anja Pärson have won seven gold medals in World Championships in alpine skiing. Her personal data is on the lists. Photo: Scanpix
SOLD: Anja Pärson have won seven gold medals in World Championships in alpine skiing. Her personal data is on the lists. Photo: Scanpix Vis mer

- Were you aware that detailed ticket information was being sold?
 
- No.

- Does Match have enough control over who has access to such information?

- We believe so and have no reasons to believe otherwise, other than through the representations you have made.

Worth millions The black market dealers pay from 1 to 2,5 euro per name — securing a multimillion profit for the seller, considering the tens of thousands of football fans mentioned in the lists.

The lists Dagbladet is in possession of is alone worth some 50 000 euros. And Dagbladet has established that these lists are only a small part of the total amount of information up for sale on the black market.

THE OFFER: This and several other e-mails were sent from a Match employee to well-known figures in the black ticket market.
THE OFFER: This and several other e-mails were sent from a Match employee to well-known figures in the black ticket market. Vis mer

In the lists Dagbladet have seen there is information about 81 444 ticket holders. Some 60 000 of those are listed with their full name and personal information.

In the ticket lists for Sweden's matches 48 781 people are named. 56 of those are Norwegians.

Top names Among those are Head of the National Bank, Svein Gjedrem. He confirms he was present at the matches in question. Gjedrem had no clue that his personal information was for sale on the black market.

Ingvar Carlsson, former Prime Minister of Sweden, and former Minister of Integration Jens Orbäck are also mentioned in the lists.

- I don't like this at all. As a former minister this is also a security issue, Orbäck says.

FORMER PM: According to the list the former Prime Minister of Sweden, Ingvar Carlsson, was also on the lists. Photo: Scanpix
FORMER PM: According to the list the former Prime Minister of Sweden, Ingvar Carlsson, was also on the lists. Photo: Scanpix Vis mer

He asks FIFA to look into the case — a view that's supported by Secretary General of the Swedish Top Football Association, Tommy Theorin, who is listed along with several close family members.

- Frightened - I'm frightened. I'm glad I've changed my passport since 2006 — I did definitely not expect FIFA to have so little control. This kind of information has to be treated confidentially, Theorin says.

The Swedish skiing legend Anja Pärson also confirms that it is indeed her personal information that can be found in the FIFA lists.

And close family members of Lars Lagerbäck, former head coach of the Nigerian and Swedish national teams, is also mentioned in the lists — as is the family of several well known footballers.

A representative for the Lagerbäck family confirms that four family members were indeed present during the 2006 WC.

Latest update The leak could prompt an investigation under the Data Protection Act, as Match is registered as a British company.

RELATIVES: Lars Lagerbäck was head coach with the Swedish National Team during the World Cup in 2006. Information about several members of the Lagerbäck family was in the lists sold on the black market. Photo: Scanpix
RELATIVES: Lars Lagerbäck was head coach with the Swedish National Team during the World Cup in 2006. Information about several members of the Lagerbäck family was in the lists sold on the black market. Photo: Scanpix Vis mer

According to Jaime Byrom, chairman of Match Event Services and director of Byrom PLC, such a report has not been made to the Information Commissioner.

- We had expected to receive further information from today?s article in order to determine the extent to which we may find the identity of a person within our organisation that may have been involved in this matter. MATCH itself was not involved in the 2006 Hospitality operation and therefore all references to 2006 Hospitality are not relevant to MATCH. The only link, is the possibility that a person who worked for iSe may have joined MATCH for 2010 and may have proceeded to act in such a manner with regard to our customer data. We are reviewing the latest article to determine our next steps, says Byrom to Dagbladet.