Technology

YouTube confirms crackdown on VPN users accessing cheaper Premium plans 

Youtube Confirms Crackdown On Vpn Users Accessing Cheaper Premium Plans

Solar Kat Latest Tech

YouTube appears to be taking a firm stance against Premium subscribers who attempt to use a VPN (virtual private network) to access cheaper subscription prices in other countries.

This week, a number of users took to Reddit to express their frustration after their Premium plans were canceled for using a VPN to purchase the subscription outside their designated region. 

VPNs are commonly used to protect user privacy and prevent cyberattacks, but they can also hide a user’s IP address, which can be tracked to a specific geographic location. VPNs can also display a specific country of origin, enabling users to appear as if they are based in a different country where YouTube Premium may be less expensive.

The company confirmed to TechCrunch that it can detect when a subscriber is lying about their signup country and the system will prompt the user to update their billing information. 

“To provide the most accurate plans and offers available, we have systems in place to determine the country of our users,” a YouTube spokesperson told us. “In instances where the signup country does not match where the user is accessing YouTube, we’re asking members to update their billing information to their current country of residence.” 

However, the company declined to speak to us about any cancellations. A Google support agent, on the other hand, had told PCMag that YouTube has “initiated the cancellation of premium memberships for accounts identified as having falsified signup country information.” The agent also said that the wave of cancellations began recently and that users who violate the rule will get an email and in-app notification that their plans are canceled. 

The alleged crackdown comes one year after YouTube’s price hike for U.S. subscribers, which brought the price of Premium for individuals from $12 to $14 per month.

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