Netflix is cracking down on account/password sharing through a new tool that will restrict sign-ons from multiple addresses without confirmation from an account holder’s secondary device, typically a smartphone.

Users logging into a Netflix app from outside the main household will be asked to verify the account via email or text code. If that verification fails or is not completed, the remote user will be asked to sign up for a 30-day free trial to the service.

“This test is designed to help ensure that people using Netflix accounts are authorized to do so,” a Netflix spokesperson said in a statement Thursday.

Netflix’s terms of service have long specified that an account subscription is for “personal and non-commercial use only and may not be shared with individuals beyond your household.”

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Regardless of the selected price plan, every Netflix account is limited to five individual profiles.

But for those household family members who might be temporarily using an account from a different address, a little coordination with the authorized subscriber, who can be alerted to keep a heads up on their phone for the verification code, should enable authorized household members to continue using the service remotely.

The action is intended to reduce password-sharing abuses, which is a common practice with some account holders and their friends. It should also help curb pirating of stolen Netflix login credentials being used without the knowledge of account owner.

The move comes at a time when the global OTT streaming service leader is facing increased competition from new premium SVoD services, like Disney+, AppleTV+ and Amazon Prime.

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By Greg Tarr

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