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Netflix Is Testing a New Feature That Blocks Subscribers From Sharing Their Passwords

If you've been accessing the streaming service by using your friends or family members' accounts, that could be coming to an end.
By Sarah Ward
March 13, 2021
By Sarah Ward
March 13, 2021

If you're always trying to stay up-to-date with all of the new shows and movies hitting Netflix, but you're also attempting to do so on the cheap — by borrowing a pal or your parents' login details — you might soon have to change your viewing strategy. Some of the service's subscribers have started reported receiving warning messages about using other people's accounts, with the platform currently testing a new feature to block password sharing.

"If you don't live with the owner of this account, you need your own account to keep watching," states the message, which then gives users a few options. If you are indeed watching via your own account, you can get a verification code sent to you via email or text. If not, you can sign up for a 30-day trial. There's also a 'verify later' option, which'll let you keep watching — but only for a short but as-yet-unspecified amount of time — and then verify later.

Images of the message have started appearing on social media, and Netflix has confirmed the move to media outlets such as The Hollywood Reporter and ABC News. THR reports that how the feature is being rolled out varies per country, and that protecting accounts from unauthorised use is one of the reasons behind it.

To ABC News, a Netflix spokesperson advised that "this test is designed to help ensure that people using Netflix accounts are authorised to do so."

Converting folks who use other people's passwords to access the platform into paying customers is obviously one of the strategy's aims, too, especially as more and more streaming services pop up in competition. And, after most folks have just spent more time at home than usual — and more time streaming Netflix, too — the company is likely looking at ways to keep growing its numbers.

Whether the password-sharing block will become a permanent feature is yet to be seen, but it isn't the only thing that Netflix has been testing of late. The platform is also working on a shuffle function, that'll automatically pick your next thing to watch and save you from scrolling for hours and hours — which is expected to be rolled out in the first half of this year.

Netflix's new password-sharing block is being tested now — we'll update you when more details are announced.

Via The Hollywood Reporter/ABC News.

Published on March 13, 2021 by Sarah Ward

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