To RoboForm or Not to RoboForm, That is the Question!


Matthew left the following comment on How to Enter 100 Contests in an Hour blog post:

Definitely read the rules as this RBC contest , prohibits the use of Form filling software, and specifies manual keystrokes.

“8. Online entries must be made by the original, manual keystrokes of the individual entrant. Use of mechanical assistance, form filling software or robotic assistance is prohibited. Online entries generated by script, macro, robotic, programming, or any other automated means are prohibited and will be disqualified.”

I have read those types of clauses in many sets of rules for many years. As I track my wins, who I won from and how I entered, I know for a fact I have won contests using RoboForm with a similar clause. I also know that to add a component to a contest that tracks keystrokes or a timer on a webpage is an additional cost to running a contest. Many companies have tight budgets so adding on a component like that is just not done. What they do is add the clause in the rules hoping to scare entrants. If you ask they lawyers who write the rules, they do not know for a fact if the company has in fact tracked the entrants as it states in the clause.

Suzanne  asked:

Many contests state that you will be disqualified if you use auto fill programmes. I know that they cannot tell if you typed the words yourself or used a progreamme. I get that but there is talk that they can tell by the speed that the form is filled out i.e.: it is just seconds between the form appearing and the submit button is hit. Do you have any comment on that?

Yes I do. I don’t worry about it. There are so many contests and so many different types of forms, that I use RoboForm for as many as I can. To me it’s a numbers game and the more I enter, the better my odds of winning, vs manually typing out every entry in fear they may have a keystroke logger in place. Also, as social media contests are getting more popular, this is becoming less and less of an issue as companies migrate to new platforms to engage with their customers and prospects.

What is your experience with RoboForm, entering and winning?

2017-11-03T18:02:27+00:00March 23rd, 2013|Marketing|8 Comments

About the Author:

Carolyn Wilman (aka @ContestQueen) is a Digital Marketing Strategist and Sweepstakes Specialist. Carolyn teaches others how to Find, Organize, Enter and Win giveaways along with working with companies to create, and viral market, winning promotions maximizing ROI and loyal customers.


  1. Christine DeGraff March 23, 2013 at 5:52 pm - Reply

    Hi Carolyn,

    I worked for several years at a company as a programmer and developed sweepstakes for very large clients including Maybelline, Kodak, etc. Prior to the drawings, I would “scrub” the database to remove duplicate entries and entries that did not follow the rules. If I noticed a large number of entries coming from the same referring URL or IP address, I would check it, and if it was a “RoboForm” type site, I would remove their entries prior to the drawing. I am sure that many smaller sweepstakes do not check for this, but that was my experience and I wanted to share that with your readers.

    Christine DeGraff
    Websketching Web Design
    A Web Designer’s Blog

    • carolyn
      carolyn March 23, 2013 at 9:47 pm - Reply

      Here is the difference between what you were doing and RoboForm. If I am entering a contest, each day from my computer, using RoboForm to fill out each online entry form, it isn’t going to be lumped in with a mass group with the same IP address as it is an auto-filler not auto-entry. Therefore, if I followed the rules, and wasn’t using auto-entry software, I would not be disqualified, even after a data scrub (aka a de-dupe) according to your description. I worked for the largest advertising agency in Canada with clients such as Kraft and General Motors, and we were only interested in removing cheaters, not how someone filled out the online entry form.

  2. Olympia March 25, 2013 at 9:52 am - Reply

    Is auto complete ok?

    • carolyn
      carolyn March 25, 2013 at 2:58 pm - Reply

      Yes. It’s a lesser form of a form-filler as you cannot use it to organize your contests and sweepstakes.

  3. RoboForm March 26, 2013 at 9:56 am - Reply

    Thanks for posting, Carolyn! We appreciate the recommendations and advice to your users.

  4. Al Simmons April 30, 2013 at 3:37 pm - Reply

    I have been using RoboForm extensively for years as both a password manager and form filler for online sweepstakes entries (and similar forms), if I have ever been disqualified for using RoboForm I have not been notified of it and have had much more frequent success since adopting the software.

  5. Sylvia December 1, 2017 at 2:16 am - Reply

    Hi Carolyn
    I realize this thread is VERY old so hopefully you can still answer some of my questions regarding this topic. When I first started doing sweeps I would use the Google Chrome Auto Fill feature but I noticed that each of the lines would turn yellow and since I wasn’t sure if that was going to come across to the agency responsible for the sweep as either Yellow, Gray, or God-forbid, blacked out all together, I subsequently opted to start entering everything by hand and honestly I am feeling frustrated and angry doing sweeps and I shouldn’t be. Because I spend soooo much time doing data entry for Hearst sweeps (for example); I feel like every entry I’m doing is unfairly balanced because I know 99% of sweep hobbyist use an Auto-fill or Roborform to complete probably 10 to my 1 entry but at the same time I don’t want to be disqualified for Hearst’s very vague “cheating” rules. I did get a hold of a Customer Service Rep from Woman’s Day mag and she didn’t see where the rules disallowed Auto-Fill but she wasn’t “sure”…again, I NEVER can get a straight answer…ugh!!!

    I do know for a fact that since these posts are pretty old, many companies have implemented software that definitely tracks your keystrokes now in 2017 as often I will see my font and/or the box I’m entering in turn from Red to Black (for example). And another thing they are doing is choosing random boxes to check for keystrokes as some will be just black font and then all of a sudden it will change red again until I’ve keyed in the full answer in the box. So for sure, they must be tracking keystrokes now. And honestly, I don’t care on most of them, it’s keying in all of the Hearst entries, I guess, is the main one that is so time consuming and frustrating for me. But I can only assume of Joe Blow small business has implemented a keystroke software, surely a company as large as Hearst must have something, don’t you think?

    Buuut, they don’t say anything in their rules, that I can find, that says anything about automated, macro, manually keying…yadayada, you know the verbiage. It’s their “rule” that says they will disqualify for cheating, well…what the heck does that cover???!! Do THEY consider shortcuts like auto-fill programs as cheating, I would say probably yes since they want their “customers” to spend as much time on their page as possible, hopefully surfing around and buying something and you know as well as I that with Auto-Filling you just don’t do that and that’s why “they” don’t like “us” lol.

    I’m sorry for rambling on about this but I’m frustrated because I have worked on sweeps for hours and hours a day for 6 months and won ABSOLUTELY NOTHING! I don’t know if I’m just wasting all my time on magazine sweeps that have horrible odds of winning, I know, but I have done hundreds and hundreds of other sweeps from all the various sweepstakes websites and still NADA. So I just clench my teeth as I’m typing away saying to myself, “everyone else uses Roboform and their life is easier and they win all the time because they can enter so many, why don’t you just do it?” Well the answer to that is in my previous paragraph about the font color changes. I never would have discovered that companies are using that software had I use an Auto-Fill and now I know that it’s “randomly” out there, I’m too nervous to not enter manually. So, I’m sure you can tell by my rant that I’m frustrated and I’m sorry I’m probably coming across like I’m some sort of sweepstakes addict, but I’m not. I am disabled so I have a LOT of spare time on my hands to do sweeping and because I enter so many I really thought by now I would have seen something in my mailbox or email. Soooo, long story short, any advise from the Queen would be most appreciated. Hope to hear from you! Until then, take care!

    • Carolyn
      Carolyn December 1, 2017 at 11:08 am - Reply

      Sylvia, I will blog a proper response as you are not alone.

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