A new London-based company Synamedia is looking to crack down on people sharing their Netflix passwords. The software works by deciphering unusual or extreme patterns by users of streaming service accounts.
But this new software won't just be able to track down small time crooks, like your friends and family; it can also be used to detect and shut down large-scale, for-profit credentials sharing accounts. The internet consumer protection group Electronic Frontier Foundation has pushed for laws to protect password sharing.
According to Synamedia, research from Magid has shown that 26 percent of millennials give out their password to others to use video-streaming services.
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The Credentials Sharing Insight system monitors account usage, the location from where it is being accessed and awards a sharing score to accounts.
The software uses artificial intelligence, machine learning, and behavioral analytics to look for activity it deems potentially fraudulent. While practices like these do instill a habit of paying up for the content consumed, we are still a long way behind when it comes to subscribing to certain OTT service provider.
"Casual credentials sharing is becoming too expensive to ignore", said a Synamedia spokesman. For example, Netflix has a subscription tier that allows one account to be streamed on four different devices at once.
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HTC has said that it can also be connected to a smartphone and the teaser video in their official tweet suggests the same. Again, pricing has not yet been confirmed, but the subscription service will be available from April 5.
Normal streaming provider accounts when shared, bring down the individual subscriber fees and hence users have to pay substantially less to watch say a Netflix original. It might seem harmless, but it adds up to billions of dollars in losses for the streaming industry. If found, in some cases, it would ask the user to upgrade to a premium account that includes sharing. "It's a great way to keep honest people honest while benefiting from an incremental revenue stream", says Jean Marc Racine, CPO and GM EMEA of Synamedia.
Available as a cloud or on-premise offering, Synamedia Credentials Sharing Insight is already in trials with a number of pay-TV operators.
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