Contest winners may have rigged the system


Bell MediaThree workers at a Canadian phone company thought they could beat the system as they hatched a way to ensure they were guaranteed to be the 25th caller to Bell Media’s CIOO-FM’s (C100) “Beat the Bank” contest.

The competition airs on the Halifax, Nova Scotia Hot AC station five times each weekday during which time successful callers push their luck with a chance of winning up to $50,000. The competition allows specific callers to try and win money before their time runs out.

Now, an internal investigation is underway at Bell Aliant to determine if they jumped ahead in C100’s call queue for its Beat the Bank contest, reports The UK Daily Mail. One of the employees is believed to have won $750 towards the end of August.

Bell Aliant is the sister company of Bell Media. Bell Aliant is not saying what kind of technology was used to ensure they callers landed in the right place, but as the company also control the phone lines that the radio station uses, it could very likely be done.

Bell Aliant released a statement: “It was brought to our attention by concerned employees that three employees were jumping ahead in the call queue for the Beat the Bank Contest on C100. We moved very quickly to alert C100 and to put a fix in place to avoid this happening for their contests in the future.”

The company said it is taking the issue very seriously and an internal investigation is underway. Three employees – a man and two women – have been suspended with pay and sent home, said the story.

The station also issued a statement: “Once brought to our attention, our contest call-in system was reviewed immediately. We remain confident in the security of the system and can ensure our listeners ‘Beat the Bank’ and similar contests are completely fair for all,’ said the radio station. We hold the integrity of our contests to the highest degree. As a result, we are withholding the final winnings of these individuals pending the outcome of the investigation by Bell Aliant.”

See the UK Daily Mail story here.