A recent story from The Canadian Press says Netflix is planning to crack down on users who use virtual private networks (VPN) and proxy services to view content not available in their countries.

It’s no secret some Canadians use VPN services to stream Netflix movies and TV shows available in the United States and around the world.

David Fullagar, Netflix’s vice-president of content delivery, has said the company is making progress in licensing content across borders but is now implementing new measures to end the use of so-called unblockers and other proxy services.

Many Netflix distribution deals with major studios and content providers are negotiated on a regional basis. That’s why certain titles are only available to users in certain countries. But use a VPN service and you can access those movies and shows right here in Victoria.

One example of how widely used VPN services can be is in the case of Australia. Before Netflix’s official presence, over 200,000 Australians were unofficially estimated to be using the service via VPNs.

Netflix’s terms and services for subscribers has this passage aimed specifically at VPN users:

‘You may view a movie or TV show through the Netflix service primarily within the country in which you have established your account and only in geographic locations where we offer our service and have licensed such movie or TV show. The content that may be available to watch will vary by geographic location. Netflix will use technologies to verify your geographic location.’

Netflix has said it takes measure to shut them down, but Fullagar said the company is “evolving” its approach to the problem and the new strategy will be in place in the coming weeks.

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