Illinois Goes After Hannah Hackers

The threat of another Hannah Montana ticket crisis was just too much for Illinois representatives, who recently passed legislation to go after scalpers who use automated bot programs to snatch up tickets at speeds and volumes far beyond human capacity.

Although Rep. Karen May’s bill received a warm welcome in the House, which voted 94-0 to make using the software a misdemeanor worthy of a $1,500 fine and jail time – there’s still one problem.

Lawmakers aren’t sure how they’ll police the legislation if it moves through the Senate and becomes state law.

May admitted to the Chicago Tribune that she’s not sure if violators can be tracked by the ticket vendors, or if law enforcement will have to rely on consumer complaints to help spot scalpers who use the software.

But after being inundated with complaints from angry parents over Hannah Montana tickets last year, "It was worth it to press forward to clarify that, as a matter of public policy, this is wrong," May told the paper.

"This wasn’t just some mom and pop sitting at the kitchen table dialing in and getting lucky," she said. "They grabbed all the tickets immediately."

While states including Minnesota, Colorado and Tennessee have pursued similar legislation, Rep. Roger Eddy told the paper he wasn’t sure how Illinois could tackle the "tremendous challenge" of controlling Internet ticket sales.

"It is a good idea … but I just don’t know if we are going to stop all this," he said.