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Netflix Are Cracking Down On Accounts That Share Passwords

Netflix Are Cracking Down On Accounts That Share Passwords

Netflix wants to know that users are “authorised” on the accounts.

Imogen Donovan

Imogen Donovan

Alas and alack. Netflix is no longer tolerating its users' practice of sharing passwords and is putting in place measures to ensure that those tuning into the latest episode of Riverdale are "authorised."

What's happening is that a proportion of current customers are being told that they must live in the same household as the owner of the Netflix account. Underneath this notification is the option for a verification code to be sent to the account owner's email address or phone number so that they are able to log into the streaming service. Reports say this is only occurring on TV versions of the app, so those using Netflix on their laptop, tablet or phone won't be blocked by this announcement at the moment.

Though everyone and their mums have been sharing their passwords with family and friends for yonks, that is absolutely against the terms of use of accounts. "The Netflix service and any content viewed through our service are for your personal and non-commercial use only and may not be shared with individuals beyond your household," reads the text, plain and simple. The only other action taken by Netflix to restrict password sharing is a limit on simultaneous streaming - meaning that if you're watching Lupin in your house, Mum isn't able to watch The Big Flower Fight on her iPad at the same time. That's unless you upgrade to the Standard or Premium plan for £9.99 or £13.99 a month.

A spokesperson for the company explained that this new move isn't intended to target password sharing, but it is to identify when these passwords might have been shared beyond the circle it was meant for. "This test is designed to help ensure that people using Netflix accounts are authorised to do so," they told The Streamable. But, if you'll need a verification code every single time you log in from another location, it could discourage people from sharing passwords purely because it isn't worth the extra effort.

In a time where lots of people are apart due to lockdowns and social distancing, this'll likely lead to a fair few headaches. Say you're a student living away from home and you can't sleep, so you think you'll watch some Pokémon the Series: Sun & Moon and count Mareep. Oh, wait, it needs a verification code and your parents are not going to appreciate the trill of a text message at 2.00am. Alternatively, you're secretly using your ex's Netflix account. What they don't know won't hurt them, and you feel like Line of Duty is a fair enough excuse. Guess you'll never know how the finale plays out, because Netflix wants to send an email to them which would rat out your subterfuge. Eesh. They'd hate to see it.

Featured Image Credit: Netflix, tino768 via Know Your Meme

Topics: News, TV