Netflix begins crackdown on UK households sharing passwords as customers made to pay £60 a year for extra member

24 May 2023, 09:58 | Updated: 25 May 2023, 09:23

Netflix loading on a phone
Netflix customers must pay £4.99 to allow other users to share accounts under new rules. Picture: Getty/Alamy
Kieran Kelly

By Kieran Kelly

Netflix has started its long-awaited crackdown on households sharing passwords in the UK, with customers made to pay £4.99 every month for an extra member. Here's everything you need to know about the rules and charges.

Streaming giant Netflix has said their latest move to crackdown on shared accounts is intended to boost its subscribers, though it has seen a fall in some countries where the scheme has already been trialled.

According to Kantar, Spain lost around one million subscribers in the first three months of the year when it started charging customers an additional 5.99 euros (£5.27) for an extra member.

The new rules and charges also applies to customers in Australia, Brazil, Germany, France, Mexico and Singapore.

The company said: "Longer term, paid sharing will ensure a bigger revenue base from which we can grow as we improve our service".

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According to Netflix's figures, its paid membership base in Canada has grown since the changes were introduced in February.

It follows estimated by the streaming giant than around 100 million households share passwords, which is not officially permitted.

Person uploading Netflix on their laptop
Customers will have to pay £4.99 for an extra Netflix account now. Picture: Alamy

How will Netflix stop password sharing? What are the new rules?

Prices vary depending on the country where the change is implemented. In the UK, customers will be charged £4.99 more a month - or £60 a year - for an additional account.

UK telecoms groups that use Netflix as part of TV bundles, including BT and Virgin Media, have also been spoken to regarding the crackdown.

Primary location is not included in this roll out. Netflix has changed the process to households, which is defined as a collection of the devices connected to the internet at the main place you watch Netflix so not about location.

Read More: Harry plans another Netflix show as William set to appear in fly-on-the-wall documentary

Read More: Netflix sharing to be banned in UK 'by end of the month' with customers forced to pay more to use same account

But if the account is used outside that primary location, Netflix will get in touch with the account holder.

The streaming service's website reads: "A Netflix account is for use by one household.

"Everyone living in that household can use Netflix wherever they are – at home, on the go, on holiday – and take advantage of new features like Transfer Profile and Manage Access and Devices. 

"We recognise that our members have many entertainment choices. It’s why we continue to invest heavily in a wide variety of new films and TV programmes – so whatever your taste, mood or language and whoever you’re watching with, there’s always something satisfying to watch on Netflix."

Streaming giant Netflix has begun cracking down on password sharing
Streaming giant Netflix has begun cracking down on password sharing. Picture: Alamy

If an account holder wants to continue sharing their Netflix account with someone outside of their household, they can add an 'Extra Member' for £4.99 a month.

When starting a new account or inviting an extra member, members can make a fresh account OR transfer a profile from an existing account to the new one

Netflix has urged users to sign out of devices that shouldn't have access and asked users to change their password if necessary.

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