Recently we have seen huge growth in the world of malware that does nothing but target your passwords. In the past, this has been to target bank account information. Now it seems these malware creators are targeting your streaming accounts.
Selling access to stolen Netflix, YouTube TV, PlayStation Vue, and other accounts is a huge business. If someone steals your bank account, you are likely to quickly notice your money gone, but people are discovering you are far less likely to notice your Netflix account being used by others.
In recent weeks Cord Cutters News is seeing a huge spike in complaints about accounts being used by others. Not only are others watching Netflix shows, but they are often changing the accounts to add features that can cost you more money every month.
We have already talked about how passwords stolen from one site are being used to access other sites like Hulu. What happens is you use the same email and password on multiple sites? One site gets compromised, and they use that information to access your email or Hulu account. (This happened to Cord Cutters News a few months ago.)
Now we are hearing of a growing trend in malware that is trying to steal your passwords to streaming services so they can resell them. This is not new but seems to be a growing trend right now.
Here is what you should know:
Someone may be using your account, and you don’t even know it.
When these accounts are sold, they tell people to not change passwords, add anything to favorites, or create a profile. Thankfully, the person who bought my account didn’t listen to them, which alerted me to the fact that someone was using my account.
How can you find out if someone is using your account?
The easiest way to see if people are using your account is to check your connected devices. Services like Hulu let you see all the linked devices to your account. There, you can remove them if you don’t know the device. If you find devices you do not own linked, you will not only want to remove them but also change your password. (They can always just log back in.) For example, you can find out how to do this on Hulu HERE. (Most services allow this option.)
Updates & Malware Removal
To help avoid getting malware on your computer (yes, even Macs) it is important to keep your computer up to date. Both Windows and Macs now allow you to automatically get updates. We would suggest turning that option on if you don’t want to manually update your computer.
This also goes for phones as now malware targets phones just like they target computers.
Also, make sure your browser is up to date. If you see that orange or red notification in the top right corner of Chrome make sure to restart Chrome so your browser has the latest security updates.
Lastly, make sure you have some type of malware removal tool on your computer. (Yes, even if you own a Mac. Today there is a lot of malware targeting Macs.)
It is crucial to use a different password for your bank as you use on random sites. Although your bank may not be compromised, a small site could be. You may also want to start using a different password for sites like Netflix and Hulu versus a random chat group.
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