Netflix Expands Password Sharing Crackdown Worldwide

Netflix on Tuesday (May 23) expanded its crackdown on password sharing to the United States and more than 100 other countries, alerting users that their accounts cannot be shared for free outside of their households.

“A Netflix account is for use by one household,” the company said in a statement.

The streaming video pioneer has been looking for new ways to make money as it faces signs of market saturation, with efforts including limits on password borrowing and a new ad-supported option.

Netflix on Tuesday said it was sending emails about account sharing to customers in 103 countries and territories, including the United States, Britain, France, Germany, Australia, Singapore, Mexico and Brazil.

The emails state that a Netflix account should only be used in one household. Paying customers can add a member outside of their homes for an additional fee. In the United States, the fee is US$8 per month.

Members can also transfer a person’s profile so the user can keep their viewing history and recommendations.

Netflix said early this year that more than 100 million households had supplied their log-in credentials to friends and family outside their homes, “impacting our ability to invest in great new TV and films”.

As of the end of March, Netflix’s paying customers totalled 232.5 million globally.

The company has experimented in a few markets with “borrower” or “shared” accounts, in which subscribers can add extra users for a higher price or transfer viewing profiles to separate accounts.

Under the new policies, people within the same household can continue sharing a Netflix account and can use it on various devices when travelling, the company said.

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