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Streaming Services are Cracking Down on Password Sharing

Women Using LaptopThe days of freely sharing streaming service passwords with friends and extended family may be coming to an end. Companies are beginning to take further measures to prevent multiple people from sharing an account.

Disney and Charter have teamed up and announced, “a comprehensive distribution agreement to continue to deliver Disney’s robust lineup of premier sports, news and entertainment content to Spectrum customers.”

As part of that partnership, the companies also said that they would be working together to fight piracy. In the joint statement, the two companies said they have “agreed to work together on piracy mitigation. The two companies will work together to implement business rules and techniques to address such issues as unauthorized access and password sharing.”

Disney+ won’t be the only service with password sharing policies in place. Hulu has a limit on how many people can stream at once and will prevent devices beyond that limit from streaming. For Netflix, password sharing violates the terms of service, but the company doesn’t have a way of enforcing the policy.

Here’s how some of those services are currently preventing password sharing.

  • Hulu limits basic and ad-free accounts to stream on two devices simultaneously, which can help curb account sharing. Adding extra screens means paying extra money which can help prevent Hulu from losing money.
  • Amazon Prime controls account sharing by linking every account to a credit card and to the Amazon site. Sharing a password would mean giving someone access to your credit card information.
  • HBO allows “members of your household” to share an account, but doesn’t specify details. However, you could get a message if you have too many streams playing at once, citing “security reasons.”
  • YouTube allows for a five person family group, but only allows three simultaneous streams. The person who creates the account, the family manager, is in charge of who has access to the account.

If you want a really in-depth look at how some services crack down on password sharing How-To Geek has a great breakdown for most of the major streaming services.

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