How To Check if Someone Else is using your Netflix Account
Nobody minds if a family member or housemate uses your Netflix account. As long as you have enough available streams and they don’t let anyone else have access to it, it’s all good. But what about if someone else is using your Netflix account without your permission? This tutorial is going to show you how to check if someone else is using your Netflix account and what to do about it if they are.
Netflix is sociable by nature. Accounts include multiple concurrent streams so families or friends can binge watch while you do your own thing. Having your account hacked or otherwise compromised is something completely different. That is not acceptable and something we will put a stop to today.
Check if someone is using your Netflix account
Netflix are well aware of the potential for accounts being compromised so provide a simple tool to show you exactly what has been going on with your account. If you’re seeing ‘Continue watching…’ for shows you have never seen or see the ‘No more streams available’ message, something could be up.
Here’s how to check.
- Log into Netflix and select your account icon in the top right.
- Select Account and scroll to My Profile.
- Select Viewing Activity and check what has been watched and when.
- Navigate back to your Account screen.
- Select Recent Device Streaming Activity within Settings.
Recent Device Streaming Activity should show you what device was used, from what IP address and location and at what time and date. Check through this to identify any entries you don’t recognize. This data is logged by Netflix on their own servers so as far as I can tell, cannot be faked. If there is an entry here you don’t recognize or cannot identify, someone else may be using your Netflix account.
If you recognize the device or IP address as someone you know but who shouldn’t be using your account, a conversation may be in order. Otherwise, just kick them out of your Netflix account and lock it down.
Securing your Netflix account
Securing your Netflix account takes a little coordination but as long as you can use tabbed browsing, takes less than a minute. We open up your Netflix account and line up a password change, use a different tab to kick all devices out of your account and implement the password change before those devices can log back in.
While unnecessary in most cases, doing things this way prevents someone who is using your account at the time logging back in before you save the password change. It’s a small thing but can make a big difference. Netflix does say that it can take up to eight hours to kick all devices off your account but it has always happened immediately for me.
- Log into Netflix using your desktop browser.
- Select Account and scroll to Membership & Billing.
- Select Change Password and enter your current and future passwords. Do not save them yet.
- Press the middle mouse button (Windows) on Sign Out of All Devices to open it in a new tab. Otherwise open the tab in a different way.
- Select Sign Out on the next page to kick everyone off your Netflix account.
- Go back to the password tab and save your password change.
This may seem like overkill, but if someone is using your Netflix account at that moment, they could theoretically log back in using the existing password before you save the change. This way, there isn’t time for anyone to log in so should not be able to access your account.
Netflix account security
Netflix still hasn’t implemented two-factor authentication even though they said they would eventually and have been lobbied hard by users and security experts to introduce it. In the meantime, it is down to us to come up with strong passwords and guard them closely.
One thing Netflix does is actively monitor the internet for cracked accounts, lists of Netflix accounts for sale and the like. So while we are still waiting for 2FA, it isn’t as if the company does nothing.
I always advocate using a passphrase rather than just a password. A collection of words, a sentence, title of your favorite movie or song, or something else. The more complicated you can make your password, the more secure it will be. A passphrase won’t be immune to a dictionary attack but it will take a whole lot longer than a single word to crack.
So that’s how to check if someone else is using your Netflix account and how to lock your account down if you need to. I hope it helps!