Popular online streaming service Netflix is trialing a crack down on password sharing.
Netflix has been using popups to ask some users to verify their account via email or text, or to verify later.”
Some users have reported seeing a screen saying, “If you don’t live with the owner of this account, you need your own account to keep watching.”
The company said in a statement, “This test is designed to help ensure that people using Netflix accounts are authorised to do so.”
Netflix did not say how many people were part of the test or if it was only in the U.S. or elsewhere.
The test comes as streaming services proliferate and more people share passwords and services.
On the most basic plan, which costs 9 monthly, users can only stream on one screen at a time. The most popular plan, which is now 14 monthly, allows two simultaneous streams; the 18 premium plan allows 3.
However, there has never been a limit on sharing an account when you aren’t streaming at the same time.
Streaming platforms, including Netflix, HBO Go, Amazon Prime and Disney+, allow users to create multiple profiles within the account, but the terms and conditions specify they are meant to be used by people in the household.
Netflix gained almost 37 million new subscribers in 2020 and now has more than 200 million subscribers around the world.