Published: Fri, January 11, 2019
Culture&Arts | By Dora Pope

Company uses AI to catch people sharing Netflix passwords with friends

Company uses AI to catch people sharing Netflix passwords with friends

New software from Synamedia can "sniff out" account sharing automatically, and was shown off at this week's Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

You subscribe to Netflix and share your password with family and friends so they can enjoy the media streaming service free of charge.

Software maker Synamedia said that the artificial intelligence system looks for potentially fraudulent activity.

If caught sharing, users could then be offered a premium service that allows for password sharing and more concurrent users.

The technology is able to identify, monitor, and analyze password-sharing activities on streaming accounts using a real-time dashboard that will highlight sharing activity complete with alerts and trend analysis.

The company points to research that about one in four Millennials give other people their credentials for video streaming services.

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"A typical pattern would be you have a subscriber that is simultaneously watching content on the East Coast and the West Coast of the US", Synamedia's chief product officer, Jean-Marc Racine, told The Verge. Our new solution gives operators the ability to take action.

As noted by the Independent, it has been estimated that credential sharing could cost subscription-based streaming services $1.2 billion in lost revenue, while the cost to pay-TV services could be as high as $9.9 billion.

The company is billing Credentials Sharing Insight as a new revenue-generating option for streaming service companies as it is a "way to market their service to new audiences". Many casual users will be happy to pay an additional fee for a premium, shared service.

It is unclear how or if Netflix would use the service.

The company says that in "extreme" cases, where passwords have been sold online, accounts will simply be delted.

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

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