Nowadays, it is considered the norm to share streaming services with many people. Whether it’s with family, friends or colleagues, there’s no reason for anyone to pay for Netflix, Hulu and Disney+ when it’s so easy to use someone else’s account. , is not it ?
Once you’ve given that login information, the problem is that you can’t control who else it’s shared with. What happens when your son’s ex-girlfriend’s best friend wants to watch the new cop show everyone’s talking about?
The scary part is that many people use a similar or even the same password for their streaming accounts as they do for their private accounts. Plus, it wouldn’t take a genius to be able to “hack” your online bank account once you give it the password!
New Survey Reveals Many Americans Are Sharing Dangerous Passwords When It Comes to Streaming Accounts
A PasswordManager.com survey conducted in October 2022 aimed to determine exactly how widespread this problem is among US streaming users.
26% had their password shared without their permission
Out of a total of 1,250 respondents, the survey found that 48% admit to sharing their streaming service password with at least one other person. The majority of respondents said they shared a streaming password with only one or two people, but some admitted they had shared it with up to five or six people.
Most password sharers say they have given their login details to family members, although almost a third have shared them with friends or romantic partners. Disturbingly, one in four say someone they shared their streaming password with shared it with someone else without their permission.
52% use the same password for shared streaming services as for private accounts
It turns out that more than half of people (52%) who have shared a streaming service password say that password is the same or similar to their private account passwords. 78% say they use the same password for their social media accounts. 56% use this password for their email, and 42% use it for their online bank.
1 in 10 even say they’ve been ‘hacked’ by someone they’ve shared a streaming service with
More than half of password sharers in the survey (51%) say they believe one or more of their private accounts have been hacked. And of that group, half say they suspect their private account has been hacked by someone with whom they willingly shared a streaming password.
3 tips for sharing passwords securely
The good news is that it’s actually quite easy to avoid these pitfalls by following a few basic password security protocols.
1. Don’t share passwords unless you have to
This tip is obvious, and perhaps easier said than done. But think twice before giving out your passwords, even to non-sensitive accounts like streaming services. Netflix has announced plans to crack down on password sharing in 2023, so isn’t it time your kids got their own account anyway?
2. Use a Password Manager Service
These days, there are many online tools that allow you to securely share passwords with multiple people. These tools are called password managers and they allow you to share login information with other people, without those people actually seeing what the login information is. Once the login information is shared, it automatically logs you into your accounts.
3. Change your password frequently
If you want to share your password with others and don’t want to bother with a password manager, the least you can do is make sure to change your shared password frequently, about every three months for more security.
Thus, anyone who has obtained your login credentials without your knowledge will not be able to access your account. It’s also essential that you change your shared passwords to something completely different from the passwords you use for your private accounts.
Password security may seem like a pain, but survey results show that not taking it seriously can have serious consequences. Do yourself a favor and, at the very least, change your shared passwords frequently and make them different from your online banking password.
Gunnar Kallstrom is a cybersecurity professional and US Army veteran with an active Secret Security Clearance. He is well versed in penetration testing using rapid deployment tools and exploitation techniques and has experience in monitoring firewalls, IDPS, packet captures, security monitoring, malware scanning and security automation. More recently, Gunnar lent his expertise as a consultant for PasswordManager.com.