Netflix 'test' pushes password sharers to get their own account

Igor Bonifacic
·Contributing Writer
·1-min read

The days of Netflix taking a lax stance toward password sharing may be coming to an end. In a test spotted by The Streamable, the company has started sending a notification that prompts people to sign up for the service if it detects they're not in the same household as the main account holder.

"If you don't live with the owner of this account, you need your own account to keep watching," says the notification. It then instructs them to verify their identity by inputting a code Netflix sends to the email address or phone number associated with the account. The company's terms of use prohibit sharing access to the platform outside of a single household.

It's worth pointing out the trial may have more to do with securing accounts than preventing friends and families from saving money, at least that's what Netflix suggests. "This test is designed to help ensure that people using Netflix accounts are authorized to do so," a spokesperson for the company told CNBC.

Historically, the only significant measure Netflix has taken against account sharing is setting limits on simultaneous streams. For instance, with the company's $9 per month basic plan, you can only stream to one device at a time, while the $18 premium subscription lets you watch on up to four devices simultaneously.