Is It Possible to Cheat at Bingo?

In 2014 there was a huge news story from New Jersey about a case of cheating at the Borgata Winter Open. This was a 2 million dollar poker tournament, held in Atlantic City. If you missed the whole thing, here’s a summary.

More than 4,000 players entered the tournament. It was played as usual, which is reduced to 27 players. Those ending in the money were able to cash out and got withdrew their winnings as they had expected.

Then the unexpected happened. The director of the tournament discovered some fake chips in play. Counterfeit casino chips! They were convincing enough to go undetected during a good portion of play. Poor enough to eventually be noticed.

So, the casino had to suspend the tournament. Those 27 players left at the end wouldn’t be getting their cash until the investigation into the tournament had ended. No one knew what was supposed to happen to those who had already been paid.

Cheating is innate to poker tournaments; typically lower stake ones. During live events, two players who have a personal relationship may conspire to fold or raise at agreed times or communicate to one another what’s in their hand.

It’s simple to cheat ar roulette. Providing your sleight of hand is good enough, you can add chips onto a number as the ball lands. You have to be quick and trust the dealer can’t see or wasn’t looking. If you get caught, you’ll be roughly ejected and banned from the casino. And likely all the local casinos nearby to stop you pulling the same scam.

This doesn’t really happen in bingo halls.

Cheating is part and parcel of human behaviour, so it’s fair to assume it’s happened in a bingo hall. Can someone cheat at bingo and pull it off successfully?

Bingo is an incredibly popular and much-loved gambling game, worldwide. Some people even play every single day. Why not? Bingo is thrilling and proven to reduce stress! Best of all, if you’re lucky enough, you could win big. You don’t need to be an expert gambler to enjoy a game of bingo, or the big jackpots on offer. It’s no wonder it’s so loved.

Just like any other game out there, there are always going to be people who would enjoy nothing more than to cheat and win. After all, they know that cheating will significantly improve their advantage over the competition, or even the system itself, and the chances of them winning become drastically increased. Tempting? When it comes to bingo, if you have a solid method for cheating, you’re pretty much sat on a pot of gold.

With everything else in life, not everything is easy. Bingo itself is fairly simple as games go. The complexity of the protection surrounding the game, on the other hand, is high. All aiming at prohibiting cheaters. If you get caught, you’ll likely be banned from the venue. They may take it to a legal level, and you’ll either end up in hot water or prison.

Cheating in bingo has happened. In 2002, a software engineer called Brett Keeton was turned over by the FBI for supposedly fixing the electronic bingo machines at some Nevada based casinos. Using his expert skills, he rigged the machines to dish out additional cards. He was paying five dollars for a twenty-dollar session. He played multiple cards at a time and won without even paying.

Once the FBI got involved, Brett ended up committing suicide by jumping from San Franciso’s Golden Gate Bridge. Yikes.

Not a happy ending, eh? Luckily, it’s one of the only sad-ending story associated with cheating at bingo. Probably because cheating at bingo rarely to never happens. Apart from some kind of digital manipulation to favour a player who might be associated somehow with the developer at the bingo software provider; there’s very little you can actually do to cheat the game.

So, you know how serious the matter is, but you’re here to learn the tactics, regardless of your intention. You might be able to beat the system, and here are the common methods for trying.

Working Secretly with the Bingo Caller

The first method sees colluding with the bingo callers. The caller at a game of bingo is the one who yells out the number (and nickname) of the ball as it comes out. You can see straight away the caller has huge potential as a cheater. You could team up and devise a strategy for communicating covertly. You might use subtle hand signals which tell what numbers are on your ticket in order for the caller to call your numbers (without them actually being drawn). Needless to say, you must not get caught.

It’s best not to overdo it with this strategy as the venue owners aren’t silly and will generally pick up on it eventually. You should go 50/50 with the caller so not to cause any falling out and they rat you out and boom, suddenly you’re facing criminal charges.

Fake It to Make It

Another way to cheat for the zealous cheaters out there is to team up again. This time, find a worker at the bingo venue where you typically play. Use this person’s insider knowledge and fake some bingo tickets. This isn’t easy. Tickets usually have several features which stop such a thing from happening. You’ll need stamps and a specific kind of paper. They might look convincing, but it still doesn’t safeguard you from getting caught!

If you have counterfeiting proficiency, you might be able to cheat the system. Take the fakes with you, and be subtle when you get them from your pocket or bag. Buy a couple of genuine tickets to fit in with the rest of the crowd. It’ll seem less suspicious. When the game begins, you should whip out your tickets and put a look on your face as if you’re seriously analysing the numbers in anticipation for a win, just like everyone else. Good luck beating both the house and the tech that works to spot fake tickets.

Confidence Is Key

A simple tip. Be confident. If you’re naturally forthcoming, polite and friendly, you’ll make a wonderful first impression to use to your benefit. This is ethically wrong, of course, but we’re here discussing cheating.

This method requires the befriending of some another player. Whilst you’re distracting them throughout the game with your chat, you eye up their ticket to see how they’re getting on. If they’re winning, you distract them again and take a key moment to swap your ticket with theirs. This isn’t the most advisable tactic as you’re highly likely to get caught by the person you’re swapping with, or someone else around you. Plus it might be the most unethical of the lot.

Cheating Online Bingo

You might think the best is yet to come, but you’re about to be sorely disappointed. A lot of people would love to know how they could cheat the system for online bingo, right from their own sofa. Is it possible?

Not really, no.

Online bingo games feature some of the highest levels of security, developed by some of the best engineering minds. On top of this, the system truly is random. They use RNGs (random number generators) to pull the numbers out. This is based on algorithms that ensure nothing but unpredictability, and therefore fairness. There are no set patterns. In short, you’ll never break it. Sorry to tell you.

You’ll also really struggle to befriend an employee at the software developer and get them to work with you on cheating. They’re hardly going to risk their job and face criminal charges or prison time over a few bingo wins.

There is no hard evidence about any of these methods happening in real life, which means either: it’s not happened because it’s simply not possible. It does happen and players are getting off scot-free. It may very well be possible, but someone’s yet to find out exactly how.

Hopefully, it’s just the former. If it’s the latter, whoops, hopefully no cheaters have gotten any ideas from this article. Perhaps it shouldn’t have been written at all.