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If you've got access to the Netflix account of someone from outside of your household, here's some bad news. You might soon have to cough up the cash for your own account, as Netflix is trialling a crackdown on people sharing the passwords.
Upon logging into their own profile on the account, some people have reported being confronted with a message that reads: "If you don't live with the owner of this account, you need your own account to keep watching."
This clearly shows that Netflix is having a long think about whether or not people will be allowed to share their accounts with people in other houses in the future.
A Netflix spokesperson told BBC News "This test is designed to help ensure that people using Netflix accounts are authorised to do so."
While a decision hasn't been made on whether this will be rolled out to every single account, the trial asks people to verify that they're allowed to access the account by having a text or email sent through to the rightful owner who pays the bill.
So, you'd better make sure you're on decent terms with them, or else you'll have to get your own subscription before too long, it would seem.
It isn't clear how many people are using Netflix accounts for which they're technically ineligible, but we all know at least one person, don't we?
Most platforms - Disney+, Amazon Prime, HBO Go, etc. - allow users to share their passwords with other people and let them create their own profiles, but the terms and conditions usually state that those people must be within the same household.
Back in 2016, Netflix's co-founder and CEO Reed Hastings said: "Password sharing is something you have to learn to live with, because there's so much legitimate password sharing, like you sharing with your spouse, with your kids, so there's no bright line, and we're doing fine as is."
In 2019, chief product officer Greg Peters went on to clarify that while the company was taking an interest in the practice of password sharing, they had 'no big plans to announce at this time in terms of doing something differently there'.
Obviously, the events of the last year have seen subscriptions to Netflix soar around the globe, with 37 million people signing up for the first time in 2020.
That means that the days of logging into your parents' or friends' account could be numbered.
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