Netflix to block proxy access to content not available locallyThursday 14 January 2016 23.34
Subscribers to video-streaming service provider Netflix will no longer be able to use proxies to watch content not available in their home country.
Due to licencing rights, Netflix's TV shows and movies vary depending on a subscriber's location.
Users often resort to proxies, or servers that facilitate access to internet content not available locally, to watch titles available elsewhere.
"If all of our content were globally available, there wouldn't be a reason for members to use proxies or 'unblockers' to fool our systems into thinking they're in a different country than they're actually in," David Fullagar, Netflix's vice president of content delivery architecture, wrote in a blog.
"In coming weeks those using proxies and unblockers will only be able to access the service in the country where they currently are.
"We are confident this change won't impact members not using proxies," he added.
The announcement comes just a week after Netflix expanded its global footprint to 190 countries, covering almost the entire globe except China, but, as in Ireland, available content differs depending on the country.
"Ultimately, the aim is to provide a service around the world that is more similar than not," a Netflix spokesperson said.
Netflix launched in the US in 2007 as a mail-order DVD service but has been shifting from recycling old shows and movies to producing more original content, with its shows such as 'House of Cards', 'Orange Is The New Black' and the docu-series 'Making a Murderer'.
Following its launch, Netflix first expanded to Canada, and then to Latin America, Europe, Australia, New Zealand and Japan.
70 million subscribers now pay a monthly fee for unlimited service.