The Ohio Lottery made cashing winning tickets between $50–$5,000 easy and secure with the launch of the new mobile cashing feature, available through the Ohio Lottery mobile app.

“Our MyLotto Rewards program is the backbone for the mobile cashing app,” explained Maureen Hall, Deputy Director, Digital Services, Ohio Lottery. “We were able to leverage profiles, accounts and workflow to bring it to life. As for the launch, specifically, we were able to easily reach out to more than one million club members to tell them the mobile app was available.”

The new mobile cashing feature allows players to cash eligible winning tickets and have the winnings directly deposited to a bank account. The app feature offers a fast, secure and convenient way to get paid for prizes and eliminates the need to travel, wait in line, and fill out paperwork. The lottery uses IDology to verify customer identity by legal name and social security lookup.

Since the app went live on April 30 (through May 18), Ohio Lottery received more than 13,500 claims for a total of $9.8 million. “This includes approximately $57,000 intercepted for the Department of Jobs and Family Services and $78,000 intercepted for the Attorney General’s Office,” stated Hall. The lottery has integrated an intercept process for both child support and state debt.

Although the pandemic was not the impetus for launching a mobile cashing app, it has proven popular with players anxious to cash their prizes. It’s all “about meeting customer expectations and giving them lots of options for cashing their winning tickets,” Hall explained.

Other lotteries are expressing interest. “From a technology standpoint, any lottery would be able to implement a mobile cashing app. It does require integration with your gaming vendor and mobile app provider. However, each lottery has different rules and regulations that they follow, so implementation may not be feasible for everyone,” she said.
In terms of time expended, “from initial ideation to launch was about a year and a half,” said Hall. “Within our implementation process, we needed about four months for actual development and going live.”

As to whether the lottery will change the minimum payout, Hall said “we are going to leave the minimum cashing level at $50 for the foreseeable future and will review customer and retailer feedback to determine if a change in cashing levels should be made in the future.”

The app has proven popular with customers. “Overall, we have had a very positive response from the customers. We knew players would embrace the technology but have been pleasantly surprised at their willingness to express their acceptance,” said Hall.

“Our retailers have embraced the new cashing option because it, in some ways, helps with player throughput in their stores. But they have shared some anticipated questions about the possible impact of cashless on their cashing bonuses,” she added.