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Netflix Is Testing A New Feature That Limits Password Sharing

It introduces a new security step.
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It's no secret many of us have shared our Netflix password with friends, family and partners over the years, but that might become a lot trickier in the future.

The global streaming giant is testing out a new security step to make it harder for people to share their passwords with others. Some users have reported they've seen a new message flash up warning them they need their own login if they're not in the same household as the person who purchased the account.

"If you don't live with the owner of this account, you need your own account to keep watching," it reportedly reads.

It then leads you to an option to verify your identity by entering a code that's either sent via text or email to the account owner in order to continue. You also have the option to "verify later."

Netflix confirmed it's part of a new campaign to prevent people from using the streaming platform without paying.

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"This test is designed to help ensure that people using Netflix accounts are authorized to do so," a Netflix spokesperson told The Hollywood Reporter, while it was also pointed out that the company runs hundreds of similar tests a year for the same issue. According to THR, one reason for the feature is to protect subscribers from security concerns if others are logging into their account.

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During a recent earnings call, at which Netflix execs were present, one financial analyst also put the question about account sharing to them (via PCMag). "We will test many things," said Netflix co-CEO Reed Hastings, addressing the assessment. "But we would never roll something out that feels like turning the screws. It's got to feel like it makes sense to consumers, that they understand."

Back in 2016, Netflix boss Reed Hastings said there were “no plans on making changes” to crack down on the practice. "Password sharing is something you have to learn to live with,” Reed explained. “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.”

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Whether the most recent test will be turned into a regular feature, we'll just have to wait and see.


This article originally appeared on Minor edits have been made by the editors.