Disney Plans to Clamp Down on Your Shared Streaming Passwords

After Netflix, customers may see such clampdowns as an inevitable trend in streaming.

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Kourtnee covers TV streaming services and home entertainment news and reviews at CNET. She previously worked as an entertainment reporter at Showbiz Cheat Sheet where she wrote about film, television, music, celebrities, and streaming platforms.
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Disney+ logo on a phone

It seems the days of Disney password sharing are numbered.

Sarah Tew/CNET

Disney is coming for you if you're sharing your account with friends and family. 

The Walt Disney Co. is planning its own password-sharing crackdown for its global streaming customers, following in Netflix's footsteps. Disney CEO Bob Iger made the announcement during the company's third-quarter earnings call on Wednesday, saying that the company is "actively exploring ways to address account-sharing and the best options for paying subscribers." 

The entertainment giant has three streaming platforms -- Disney Plus, Hulu and ESPN Plus -- with a global subscriber base of 146.1 million for Disney Plus. Iger said that account-sharing is a priority for 2024 but that Disney will start updating its subscriber agreements later this year "with additional terms on our sharing policies." The media company will look to optimize these policies to help drive monetization in the new calendar year. 

Since his return to Disney in November, Iger has committed to growing profitability for its streaming business. One of the ways Netflix sought to curb subscriber losses was through enforcing its password-sharing policies by charging extra member fees. US customers who share their accounts with anyone outside of their primary household must pay an additional $8 per month. 

As Disney starts exploring its own password strategy, customers should prepare to pay more for their ad-free Disney Plus and Hulu subscriptions. The company is implementing another price hike on Oct. 12, with plans to add a new ad-free bundle option on Sept. 6.