YouTube cracks down on Premium subscription VPN loophole

Jitendra Soni

YouTube is cracking down on users exploiting VPNs for cheaper Premium subscriptions, according to a new report.

YouTube is one of the best streaming platforms, and home to a wide variety of content. However, after the YouTube Premium price hike in July last year, people started exploiting a workaround that lets users access cheaper subscription prices in other countries.

The Google-owned platform is now automatically canceling such subscriptions to ensure that users pay the proper price for their region.

Several users took to Reddit to post screenshots of the communication received from YouTube, expressing their dissatisfaction over the decision.

PCmag quoted a Google support agent who stated, “YouTube has initiated the cancellation of premium memberships for accounts identified as having falsified signup country information. Due to violating YouTube’s Paid Terms of Service, these users will receive an email and an in-app notification informing them of the cancellation.”

For those unaware, some users were able to use a VPN to spoof their location to a country where it offers a subscription at a subsidized rate. This way, they could sign up using an international payment card and save some money.

YouTube Premium

In some regions, YouTube Premium membership is almost 90% cheaper than in the US. For example, YouTube Premium is priced at $2.40 a month in Ukraine, while in the US or UK, the Premium tier is available at $14 to $15 per month.

“To provide the most accurate plans and offers available, we have systems in place to determine the country of our users. 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,” a YouTube representative told TechCrunch.

While it’s odd for a digital subscription to have different pricing, these users might need to resubscribe to YouTube Premium in their regional pricing to enjoy the Premium features.

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