Do you sometimes play games on your smartphone that get interrupted by advertising? In some of those 30-second ads, you’ll hear about games where you can win real money, but is that legitimate? They’re not just Vegas-style gambling games, but things like solitaire and Scrabble. I wanted to find out if these games were legit or if there was a hidden catch. This is what I found.
Online Gaming Apps
So the million-dollar question is, “Are online gaming apps that pay money for winnings legit?” That question isn’t as easy to answer as it seems. Typically, they’re not games where you would expect to win money. They might be a scrabble-type game, bingo, or even gem-matching games. So while you might think of online poker or blackjack first, that’s not even what these games are. They make it seem easy to play a simple game or two and come away with immediate cash. But that isn’t exactly the case. Some are too good to be true, and few people win money when they play.
Don’t think the app is automatically legit because they have a celebrity spokesperson. I’ve been inundated with 30-second ads featuring Jenny McCarthy or other famous people telling me that this game is super legit and it’s easy to win money when you play. The problem is, Jenny McCarthy herself probably hasn’t even played these games. If you look closely, these so-called endorsements were recorded on Cameo, an online service where fans can pay to get personalized messages from their favorite celebs. The game companies are doing just that, which is pretty shady if you ask me.
Giving Your Payment Information
Say you play one of these games, and you win. How do you get your money? In some cases, the games are paid, so you have to make a payment to have the option to win, which can be problematic since winning isn’t guaranteed. Some apps have you complete surveys for money between rounds, so gameplay is regularly interrupted. Others give you units in the game to cash out for gift cards. In any case, the chance of seeing any money is limited. There have even been some games that close down before they ever make a single payout.
Are Any Legit?
Some games may be legit, but that isn’t the core problem. In some states, collecting money from online gaming is illegal, so you can put yourself in an awful position if you play. Always review local laws. Don’t provide additional personal information; watch your email for payout information through gift certificates or PayPal. And it’s crucial to continuously monitor your credit so you can catch a problem when it happens and not after it causes a significant issue for your finances.
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A message from Dale Marco:
Hi all, Dale here. I want to let everyone know that I work with credit monitoring partners as an affiliate seller. I make a commission when you sign up for these services, but I wouldn’t recommend just anyone. These are organizations I trust and use myself. My goal with my blog is always to educate, but it’s also part of my business, and I receive compensation when you use the products I recommend.