Have you been using Netflix more since the start of the pandemic? You aren’t alone. The number of Netflix subscribers continues to grow, exceeding the expected trajectory, even as new streaming platforms are being released.

Cybersecurity issues have been at the forefront for the last several months, as COVID-19 has driven more people online to do their daily tasks. Fraud and theft committed by hackers have risen dramatically, and more people have realized how important it is to keep their data secure. Often overlooked is the importance of keeping your streaming service platforms protected as well. Here’s what to keep in mind for your Netflix account in 2021.

1. Don’t Recycle Passwords

Your Netflix password shouldn’t be shared across other platforms and it shouldn’t be shared with others. Since your account is linked to payment information, unauthorized access to your account could lead to theft. Should you share your account with others, you expand that risk to include any breach that happens on their end as well.

When creating your password, use at least eight characters and a mix of upper and lowercase letters. Incorporate numbers and special characters as well to get the most out of password protection. If you use your account on mobile devices, also ensure your device is equipped with a password in the event it’s lost or stolen.

2. Sign Out on Unused Devices

While it may be convenient to leave yourself logged in on your laptop, phone, or tablet, it also means someone else can more easily access your information if they get a hold of your device. Signing out in between sessions can help keep your personal information protected, even when your device is out of your hands. With restrictions on the number of devices you can have to access a single account in place, it will also ensure that you have access to streaming content when you want it.

3. Equip Your Network with a VPN

Consider installing a VPN for your Netflix subscription. A Virtual Private Network creates a secure internet connection and encrypts any data passing through the network. While it’s an excellent choice for beefing up security on your home Wi-Fi, it can also be installed on individual devices. If you travel, live on campus, or otherwise use your mobile devices on networks that aren’t your own, a VPN can protect you from would-be hackers.

One more word on VPNs and mobile devices for those who travel — this tool can allow you to bypass firewalls. If you spend a significant amount of time traveling to countries or regions where access to Netflix is limited or restricted, a VPN can allow you to still watch your favorite shows by overcoming geo-restriction. This tool is equally beneficial to those who use school or work networks that can limit access to streaming content.

Final words

Whether you’re recently streaming or have been a customer since Netflix first debuted, there’s no time like the present to up your cybersecurity measures. With a few precautions put in place, you can be enjoying your Netflix originals and longtime favorites at your convenience — without risking your personal data.