Ticketmaster set to pay $10 million in criminal fees after hacking rival company
Ticketmaster and Live Nation have landed themselves into hot water after some of their less-than-legal matters were aired out, and they were forced to cough up a hefty sum of $10 million. How? They hacked rival company, CrowdSurge.
CrowdSurge, which has merged with Songkick, was the victim of a sneaky hack which was intended to bring the company down to the ground. Ticketmaster hired a previous employee of CrowdSurge and used his knowledge against him and the company. Stephen Mead, the employee in question, was pressured by execs to hand over his old usernames and passwords used at CrowdSurge, so that the company could gain access to sensitive information, which used in a manipulative way could have seriously hurt the rival company.
“Ticketmaster employees repeatedly—and illegally—accessed a competitor’s computers without authorization using stolen passwords to unlawfully collect business intelligence…Further, Ticketmaster’s employees brazenly held a division-wide ‘summit’ at which the stolen passwords were used to access the victim company’s computers.” – Attorney Seth DuCharme
As another punishment, Ticketmaster must report to the attorneys who handled the case for the next three years to ensure that they are compliant with the rules and will not breach the law again.
This is not the first time that a legal battle with CrowdSurge and Live Nation has taken place, or the first time these allegations have been brought to light either. Dating back to 2017, it was all brought up when CrowdSurge sued Live Nation for anti-competitive behavior and antitrust violations. Live Nation countersued, but it was them who lost in the end and paid up $110 million.