Netflix to track and stop users from sharing their accounts with friends

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Up to a quarter of young people share passwords forvideo streaming services such as Netflix - but that could soon be a thing of the past. Good luck sharing the upcoming Disney streaming service with your MouseMingle friends across the country.

Synamedia presented the technology at the CES 2019 conference in Las Vegas.

The company points to research that about one in four Millennials give other people their credentials for video streaming services. "It allows operators to turn casual sharing into incremental revenue, as well as detect and apply enforcement procedures on fraudulent, for-profit credentials sharing accounts". It will train the AI-based system on factors such as location from where an account is being accessed from, what time it's used and for what duration, the content being watched, which device is being used, so on and so forth. However, it will also be able to work out if the freak log-ins are fair game, such as the user being on holiday or whether they have shared passwords with a family member who lives away from home. "A typical pattern would be you have a subscriber that is simultaneously watching content on the East Coast and West Coast of the U.S.", chief technology officer Jean-Marc Racine told The Verge. Any account, when it goes over a certain share score or concurrent user limit will be reported and then the OTT service provider can take matters into their own hand. The company, which sells many different products which all promise to monetize video-streaming, claims to "empower Pay TV operators to deliver new or augmented video services to drive revenues, boldly reach new markets, and deliver exceptional subscriber experiences to consumers".

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Racine says that Synamedia's machine learning approach, which notes always-evolving "consumption patterns", is more flexible than a hard-coded algorithm that has to be updated manually and often.

It predicts that by 2021, credentials sharing will account for £7.8billion of losses in pay-TV revenues.

Trials of the machine learning system have already begun, Synamedia revealed.

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