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Preventing Password Sharing Leakage in the Golden Age of Streaming

Logging into streaming service with two factor authentication

Password sharing is fast becoming an epidemic impacting the health and productivity of many streaming companies. Year over year, a significant amount of revenue is lost as the result of people using streaming services without paying for them. Since the practice is a widely accepted form of piracy amongst many consumers, streaming companies must be proactive in their approach to capture and keep the money that rightly belongs to them.

Netflix has recently taken the first step to combat password sharing on a large scale. As the streaming giant finds its footing testing a new two-factor authentication system for sign-in, other streaming services will likely follow suit and introduce their own solutions for leakage.

Why did Netflix choose this moment to ramp up security and clamp down on password sharing? What does it mean for the rest of the industry – and for consumers? Here are a few main takeaways:

The Right Moment for Two-Factor Authentication

Many companies in the streaming industry have experienced a massive influx in viewership since the pandemic began in early 2020. People are simply online more and longer. Even now, as the pandemic shows signs of curtailment in many countries, people may not return to their previous lifestyles so quickly. Content consumption shows no signs of slowing. These unique circumstances have given streaming companies a newfound urgency and an open window to explore anti-piracy solutions that would minimize more than just password sharing – a comprehensive security approach would deter and detect piracy and leakage from a number of entry points.

However, the timing of this security implementation is not only about viewership numbers and a surge in demand. As consumers begin to expect security checks as part of most other online services, the move to add them to the log-in process for streaming services feels organic and natural.

Security Should Enhance Quality of Experience

First and foremost, the right security methods and tools will strengthen protection without compromising a positive user experience. Security checks (if implemented correctly) are no longer an inconvenience or a hassle for end users. In fact, many consumers demand them.

However, it is important to keep in mind that if security measures become too complicated, the inconvenience is certain to drive subscribers away and adversely impact company revenue that may already be compromised by unauthorized users.

The right security approach will protect revenue in tandem with the user experience – and can even turn a would-be password-sharer into a loyal subscriber. The security balance is crucial to ensure that users can effortlessly log-in, explore content libraries, choose titles and view online with ease. Content security and authentication features must be strong and powerful in a seamless workflow.

Comprehensive Security for the Entire Workflow:

  • Forensic Watermarking – empowers operators to detect camcording, digital and analog attacks, and geometric manipulations at device and subscriber levels.
  • Digital Rights Management (DRM) – enables the seamless viewing of premium content on all devices and platforms, streamlines key delivery, and cloud deployments offer easy scalability without overprovisioning.
  • TV Everywhere Authentication — streamlines the authentication process with a single integration for secure subscriber entitlement and content authorization.
  • Analytics Tools – make it possible for operators to easily surface subscriber profitability stories that can lead to actionable insights powerful enough to boost consumption rates, reduce churn and increase ARPU.

Operators can leverage these solutions, as well as cloud deployments and flexible pricing models to cost-effectively protect service revenues as well as content. Following in Netflix’s footsteps to implement advanced, yet seamless streaming security is essential.

Book a meeting with a Verimatrix Security Specialist to discuss your content security needs and get started. Even as subscription rates continue to increase, piracy impacts these numbers and leakage is significant. Streaming providers must get on board now in order to prepare for the expanding future of content streaming.

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