Netflix is one of the most well-known streaming services in the world, used by more than 118 million subscribers in 190 countries. The platform offers a seemingly endless quantity of films and television that are available to watch on a variety of devices. But with so many users and such a high level of popularity, have you ever wondered: what does Netflix know about you?
What Does Netflix Know About You?
Whether or not you’re aware of it, Netflix collects a lot of data from its users. For example, the app analyzes your viewing history, search queries, and even the type of device you use to watch your favorite movies and TV shows.
Although some people may not be concerned about this, many users find it unsettling that a company knows so much about their viewing habits. As viewers grow more concerned about their online privacy, they have begun addressing the amount of information that the apps they regularly use have on them.
So, what does Netflix know about you? Here are some of the data points that the company collects from its users:
- Viewing history: Netflix keeps track of every movie and TV show that you watch on its platform. This data is then used to improve their algorithm and recommend new content to you based on your personal preferences.
- Search queries: When you look for a show or movie on the Netflix streaming service, the company keeps a record of your search query that is then associated with your profile. This gives Netflix more information about the content its users are looking for.
- Device information: The Netflix app collects information about the type of device you use to watch its content. This also includes your Internet speed, operating system, and screen resolution.
- Location data: Netflix has also been known to collect information about your general location, as well as your IP address and the country where you’re accessing the service.
While some of this information may seem harmless, it’s vital for users to remember that this data is routinely used to target their audience with advertisements. In some cases, the information is even sold to third-party companies. Depending on who has access to it, this data may even be used to identify you personally.
Netflix Privacy Concerns and Data Collecting
One of the instances where users began to feel suspicious of Netflix and its supervision occurred in December 2017. They shared a message on Twitter that read: “To the 53 people who’ve watched A Christmas Price every day for the past 18 days: Who hurt you?”
This altered many users to the fact that the streaming service actively observes their users’ activity. And while a percentage of users seemed to think it was all done in jest, a huge portion of the Netflix user base saw this message as a direct violation of their privacy.
Netflix quickly followed up their joke with a statement that claimed the information in the Tweet “represents overall viewing trends, not the personal viewing information of specific, identified individuals.” And while this was enough to calm some users, it caused a spike in subscribers actively looking for ways to protect their viewing history and, subsequently, their privacy.
How Can You Protect Your Privacy?
Protecting your privacy online has become more important than ever before. One way to protect your privacy while streaming on the Netflix app is by using a VPN. A VPN, or virtual private network, is a tool that encrypts your connection and masks your IP address. This masking makes it harder for anyone to track your online activity, including Netflix.
Using a VPN helps protect your privacy by protecting your Internet connection, hiding your IP address, and preventing anyone from spying on your activity. When you connect to a VPN, your Internet traffic is routed through a remote server, hiding your IP address and giving you an alternative one. This effectively protects the data that is attached to your IP address, such as your location and other similar data.
However, it’s important to note that Netflix does actively block some VPNs from accessing its content. This is because Netflix is required to enforce regional licensing agreements, and using a VPN to bypass these restrictions violates the company’s terms of service.
Ultimately, a VPN will help to secure your online activity and protect your data from unauthorized access. Whether you’re looking to reduce invasive observation from your favorite streaming app or simply give your Internet privacy a boost, using a VPN is the perfect solution to enhancing your online security.
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