How To Get Around Netflix VPN Block
I use Netflix every day, and I stream their region-locked content from all over the world, depending on my mood. I do this by using an excellent and popular VPN.
Some of my friends and even some of my family can’t seem to get this right, and they say that they are doing exactly what I’m doing to unlock region-specific content. However, there are a few things they don’t know, and this article shares them with you.
The best and easiest way to get around Netflix’s VPN Block is to sign up to a VPN service provider with the ability and resources to deal with Netflix’s VPN detection services. Small VPN services and free VPN service usually consist of a tiny network and little resources which enable Netflix via several means to detect and block them.
In this article, we will cover Netflix and streaming services and how they work. Then we will go into detail about how Netflix and VPNs work against each other.
Furthermore, we will cover the methods Netflix sues to detect and block VPN services, and finally, we will go through the step-by-step process of how to get around Netflix’s VPN Block
Streaming services (Netflix) and VPN overview
Home entertainment has come a long way since the days of the VCR and the days of the DVD. We can now choose from the widest variety of movies and TV shows that would have taken up 50 blockbusters, and there is no need for any form of tangible medium.
You can now sit in the comfort of your living room with your Smart TV, an internet connection, and then the most important thing, a streaming service, which allows you to like never before immerse yourself in the most fantastic content this planet has to offer, just with a click of a button.
Although streaming services offer you everything you could ever have hoped for in terms of your favorite movies and TV Shows, there is one drawback to them: some of them are region-locked.
This means that they are only available in a specific location, for example, a country or continent. Streaming services sometimes go the extra mile and make things more complicated by having different content for different regions.
This is where a VPN comes in to save the day and provide us with the ability to watch what we want without having to move halfway across the globe. What do I mean?
Well, a VPN is a service that you subscribe to that offers you the opportunity to connect to their servers, which are located all around the world, enabling you to access region-locked content that would otherwise not be available in your region.
In more detail, when you use a VPN, you connect to a server of your choosing, and when you do, you are able to spoof (hide) your location, meaning you can trick streaming services into thinking that you are in a specific region other than your own and then you can access that regions content, for example.
If I lived in the United Kingdom (UK) and wanted to access content for US Netflix, I would use a VPN to do so; otherwise, I would only be able to view and stream content available in the UK.
But how does Netflix know where I am located?
All Netflix has to do is check your IP address. This will give them details on your ISP (Internet Service Provider) and tell them where you are based. Once they know your IP address, the streaming service either lets you access the content based on your location, or it does not.
When using a VPN, you are given a new region-specific IP, and it correlates to the server you choose, which could be located anywhere around the world.
Therefore, when the streaming service detects your IP, it will think you are in the same region you have chosen, and hence, you are able to view that restricted region-locked content.
How do I know Netflix has detected my VPN?
Have you ever seen the phrase “Oops, something went wrong… You seem to be using an unblocker or proxy” when trying to stream content off of Netflix? Netflix is not shy and lets you know straight away if they think you are using a VPN or proxy.
This is the most common way Netflix will let you know that they have detected that you are using a VPN or proxy.
In some instances, this message won’t show, and the content just won’t work, or the video will try to load and buffer endlessly.
How does Netflix detect and block VPNs?
You can imagine that Netflix does not like VPNs and has put preventative measures in place to detect them and block them. These detection methods are not without their loopholes, and they can be bypassed, however.
There are many ways that Netflix can tell if a user is connected to a VPN. I have listed the most common methods below.
Netflix keeps a list of IP addresses that belong to VPN services. Blacklisting servers tend to work better for smaller networks (free VPNs) because they are effortless to detect. Netflix knows that people are using a VPN if the same IP address is used for logging into thousands of Netflix accounts.
This usually takes place over a short period of time (one or two days).
However, this method can’t stop large-scale major VPN service providers because of the resources (they are equipped with thousands of servers). Due to this, if a server does get blocked on a major VPN, all you usually have to do is connect to a different server, and the problem will be solved.
If you are using mobile devices like tablets and smartphones, then it is much more challenging to unblock Netflix region-locked content because mobile devices contain your current GPS location.
Netflix will check if your location and IP address are based in the same location, and if they are, you do not have to worry.
However, if you have a different location for your GPS as that of your IP address (your GPS says the UK, and your IP says the United States), Netflix knows that you are almost certainly using a VPN.
Blocking traffic from specific ports
A server has many different ports (you can think of them as gates that allow certain types of vehicles through). Most servers will allow internet traffic (HTTP traffic) through port 80, or HTTPS traffic through port 443. VPN protocols have their own ports that they use.
So, all Netflix has to do is block the port that uses the PPTP protocol, which is usually port 1723, and then they can essentially block all VPN traffic from connecting to their server.
Why does my VPN not unblock Netflix?
If you have been using a VPN for some time and have been able to view region-locked content and are not able to anymore, the most likely cause is Netflix has upgraded their VPN detection measures.
The VPN you are using might not have the resources and ability to counteract these detection measures; however, large scale major VPN providers always find a loophole to unblock the service once it has been detected.
If you are using a major VPN service provider, for the most part, usually all you have to do is connect to another server or call customer support to solve your problem.
Can I unblock Netflix with a free VPN?
If you are using a free VPN, it probably doesn’t matter what you do; you will not bypass Netflix’s VPN Block. This is due to the fact the free VPN services are usually run on small networks.
Hence, if a small portion of their servers is blacklisted or even one server is blacklisted, it will have a massive impact on the services.
Another downside to free VPNs is that they are clogged with tens of thousands of users, if not more, and if you do manage to view region-locked content, that server will be so filled with users that it will almost make it impossible to view anything because of the speed.
Remember that VPN servers have a bandwidth limit, and their server load (number of users) will impact your connection speed.
How to get around VPN Block on Netflix
I am going to explain to you how to bypass what is known as VPN Block on Netflix. This method will work with all major streaming services; however, it is not just applicable to Netflix
Funny enough, the only thing you have to do in order to bypass Netflix’s VPN Block is to use a better VPN service provider.
- First, sign up for a good well known VPN service that can unblock a wide range of streaming services.
- Download the appropriate version of the software for your device, then log in.
- Choose the server in a region you would like to connect to. For example, use an American server to unblock Netflix.
- Finally, stream content on your chosen device.
We conclude that it is pretty simple to get around Netflix’s VPN Block. All you have to do is sign up for a VPN service that is well know and big enough to be able to cope and manage with the VPN detection systems that Netflix has in place. That’s it.
We also learned quite a few other things in this article on how Netflix detects and Block VPNs, why certain VPNs won’t work with Netflix and their region-locked content, how to tell if Netflix has detected if you are using a VPN, and how does Netflix know where you are located.
Knowing all of this comes in handy when you are presented with similar problems down the line, and hopefully, this article made those problems you may face a little easier.