We've got bad news for those who've been saving a couple of bucks sharing Netflix accounts. The multinational online media streaming platform has reportedly been trialing means of cracking down users who share passwords despite not living under the same household.
Over the past few days, numerous users have reported seeing a similar screen. The said screen says that "if you don't live with the owner of this account, you need your own account to keep watching." Afterward, users are then asked to verify their access credentials by providing a code sent via text or email.
The test is reportedly meant to ensure that only those who are authorized to use the Netflix account can access it.
However, if it's any consolation, this is still essentially a pilot run. Netflix has yet to make a decision if they will roll this new anti-sharing feature out officially.
Netflix Seeking to Protect Investment Amidst Competition
To say that Netflix's list of competition has grown considerably over the next few years is no understatement.
With the pandemic essentially forcing everyone to stay indoors, numerous companies who weren't "all in", or so to speak, on their own online streaming platforms, have since gone full throttle. This includes Disney.
The aforementioned company's Disney+ streaming service grew past the 100-million subscriber mark recently. This huge surge is arguably due to the success of the MCU series, WandaVision.
With that said, Netflix is arguably the first one to try and crackdown on password sharing.
In a nutshell, password sharing refers to splitting access of a single account across a group of users not living inside the same household. Technically, a single account on any streaming service allows users to create multiple profiles. However, specified terms and conditions usually make it known that users are only allowed to share accounts if they live in the same household.
However, it's also no secret that penny pinchers have used this to their advantage. Even if they don't live under the same household, users often share a single account. This has even gone as far as to be done between complete strangers.
Silver Lining to Netflix Crackdown on Password Sharing
Netflix has more than 200 million subscribers worldwide. This is, by far, the most of any subscription-based online streaming platform. However, this subscription count could grow even further if they decide to crack down on password sharing. They've essentially done this already. Their trial was basically a two-factor authentication process.
However, while this is definitely Netflix looking out for Netflix, there are some benefits to be had here.
For example, the more money Netflix has, the more money they can throw around towards making better movies and series. In addition to this, password sharing has its fair share of risks. This includes seeing your personal data stolen by anyone with malicious intent.
People often reuse their passwords across multiple websites. This means that you are at risk simply for sharing your Netflix credentials. This is because you have no control over who has your credentials anymore. As a result, there's a chance that your accounts beyond Netflix could be compromised.