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Your Hulu or Netflix may be hacked, here's what to do

Don't let hackers (or other freeloaders) watch your shows. Here's how to cut them off.

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hulu-profiles

How do you know if someone hacked your Hulu? Look at the profiles. 

Screenshot by Alina Bradford/CNET

If your Hulu or Netflix account is as near and dear to you as most of your friends, you can just imagine how hurt and violated I felt when my Hulu account was hacked recently. 

But it led me to do some research on how to know if your account is hacked and how to get back control. Here's what you need to know.

Uh, new profile. Who dis?

The biggest red flag that your account is being used by someone else is when a new profile pops up. The new profile that appeared on Hulu all of a sudden was named "TF." TF is right! Who the F was on my account?!

Before you get all paranoid, make sure the new profile wasn't made by your BFF or some other person you told your password to.

After harassing my friends and family I discovered that no one had made the suspicious account. At least they didn't admit to it...

I also noticed that my home device information kept getting changed. I had to keep switching it back. Hmm.

Another sign is new shows popping up in your list that you'd never watch. "Tokyo Ghoul" and "Attack on Titan"? I'm more of an "Archer" and "Family Guy" fan when it comes to animation.

Do some sleuthing

Now that you're good and riled up, check your devices to see if anyone's logging in from somewhere strange. If you're on Hulu, go to Account and tap on Manage Devices. On Netflix, go to Account and click on Manage Download Devices.

Look for any devices that don't belong. When you find one, delete that sucker! I found a login from Apple TV and another by someone called Trinicracker. I don't have an Apple TV and neither do any of my friends. I also don't know anyone by that name. Umm... bye.

hulu-hack

Who are you and why are you using my account?

Screenshot by Alina Bradford/CNET

Then, for good measure, go back to the account settings and click on Sign Out of All Devices on Netflix. On Hulu, go to your accounts page, click Protect Your Account and click on Log Me Out of Other Computers.

Secure your account

Next, change your password ASAP, before the trickster tries to log back in. Make sure your password is something, good, too. "123456" isn't going to cut it. Sharon Profis has a great article on how to choose a good password, in case you need help.

You may also want to change the email address you use to log in. It may be circulating around the internet: You can check on Have I Been Pwned to see if your email has been compromised in a major security breach. 

A security breach is when your email, password, account name, credit card information or any other data stored on a website is illegally accessed by hackers and released to the public. Sure enough, my email address (and several of my passwords) had been linked to seven different security breaches. Eep! 

Finally, get some closure by deleting the new profile. On Hulu, go to Account > Profile, then click on the offender. Take a long, satisfying gulp of wine (or your preferred beverage) and click Delete at the bottom of the screen. Choose Delete again and then OK. With Netflix, go to Account > Manage Profiles, click on the offending profile and choose Delete Profile > Delete Profile > Done.

If you do find out it was a friend or loved one that was using your account, these tips put an end to their freeloading ways, too.