Netflix is reportedly working to block all types of geo-location changers, capable of moving the user’s IP address from one country to the U.S.
The streaming giant has come under fire from movie companies, after “proxy pirates” have started emerging, viewing the U.S. Netflix shows from different countries.
Netflix is currently available in a few countries, and even then it cannot hold the same shows in multiple regions. Due to licensing issues, some regions get a lot less content for the subscription.
This has lead Netflix subscribers to invest in a VPN or use a free proxy service, to take advantage of the hundreds of movies and TV shows, only available on the U.S. service.
Even though Netflix is usually on the side of the customer, it looks like the pressure from movie companies to control user’s viewing habits has forced Netflix’s hand.
Early tests of the reported block have affected TorGuard VPN users and other proxy users, stopping them from watching content overseas. Other rent and streaming services deploy similar technology, to make sure user’s cannot access foreign servers.
Netflix still relies heavily on third party licensing for the bulk of its service, even though House of Cards, Orange is the new Black and Marco Polo have all become popular on the service — Netflix’s original programming.
The rate of Netflix viewers in the U.S. tops 50 million, even though Netflix’s records only accounts 40 million subscribers. That means potentially 10 million viewers come from overseas to view the content.
It is not clear when Netflix will deploy the technology to stop VPNs and proxies, but several VPNs have confirmed they already have solutions to the Netflix block , when it comes.