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Netflix VPN Blocking – How Are They Detected?

Netflix VPN Blocking – How Are They Detected?


If you watch Netflix, you will know that it offers a selection of different TV shows and movies in each region. As such, the offers you get in the US may not be the same as what you can access in the UK. To get around this, many people use a VPN or a VPN.

Unfortunately, Netflix got wise about this and started blocking VPNs, leaving you with an error screen instead of accessing your favorite shows. Fortunately, there are ways to get around the system. In this article, we explain how Netflix detects your VPN, how to use a VPN that works on a range of devices, and how to connect to a different server.

Netflix VPN Ban – How Do They Detect My VPN?

The VPN blocks the original IP address showing your location. It then forwards your Internet connection through a new IP address in a different geographic location of your choice. By doing this, you can trick Netflix into thinking you are located in another location and access Netflix shows in that region.

However, the VPN service only has so many IP addresses available. Countless other users from different locations can use your assigned IP address. Netflix’s most effective way to block a VPN is to check and see if your IP address is associated with a VPN. Once it becomes clear that you are using a VPN, Netflix will block your IP address and flag it in the VPN database.

I don’t use a VPN but it says I am

When Netflix marks an IP address as associated with a VPN, it will often automatically flag several other IP addresses belonging to the same host. This wasn’t an issue until VPN providers started using residential IP addresses. When Netflix started blocking these IP addresses, they also blocked valid users.

If your Netflix account is reporting an error regarding VPN usage, even if you’re not using it, that’s probably what happened.

You can contact your ISP and ask them to change your IP address to solve this problem. Alternatively, try unplugging your router for a few minutes before reconnecting it – this can also reset your IP address.

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How to use a VPN that works

The best way to access Netflix with a VPN is to use a reputable provider that provides hundreds of thousands of IP addresses. These big VPN providers frequently update the IP addresses they use, so you’re unlikely to end up with one that Netflix recognizes.

There are many VPN providers out there, but the best one in our tests with Netflix was ExpressVPN. It is easy to use and safe. ExpressVPN is well worth it, considering it’s fast and secure.

Let’s take a closer look at how to use ExpressVPN with Netflix on different devices:

How to connect to a Netflix VPN on Firestick

Connecting your Firestick to a reputable VPN provider like ExpressVPN is simple.

  1. Open your Fire device and search for ExpressVPN in the Amazon Appstore. Download and activate the ExpressVPN app.
  2. Log into the ExpressVPN app. The app will prompt you to choose if you want to share anonymous information to make the app faster and more reliable. Make your choice to continue.
  3. A prompt box will then ask you to accept or allow ExpressVPN’s connection request. Click OK.
  4. To connect to the VPN server, click the big connect button that shows the same on/off switch icon on your TV remote. As a default, ExpressVPN will suggest a “smart location”. Usually, this site is the one that will give you the best experience.
  5. Wait for the “Connected” message to appear. Once this is done, you can go to Netflix and start watching the shows you want to watch.

How to connect to a Netflix VPN that works on a Roku device

Roku devices do not support the use of a VPN on their own. To use a provider like ExpressVPN, you will need to have ExpressVPN installed on your router.

To use your own router, first make sure you have an ExpressVPN account and that your router supports this provider. Next, follow the instructions in the ExpressVPN guide on how to install ExpressVPN on your router at home. Remember, each router will have its own set of instructions, so be sure to find the right ones. Once you have this setup, follow these steps to stream Netflix without restrictions on your Roku device:

  1. Go to your Roku device and go to Settings. Then choose “Network” before selecting “Setup Connection”.
  2. A list of available networks will appear. Choose the VPN-protected Wi-Fi connection from the ExpressVPN-connected router.
  3. Enter your Wi-Fi password. Roku is now connected to ExpressVPN via your router. Go to Netflix, and you will be able to watch your shows without geographical restrictions.
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How to connect to a Netflix VPN that works on your Apple TV

Like Roku, Apple TV does not directly support VPN software. ExpressVPN’s MediaStreamer functionality works well for this and makes it easy to stream Netflix from another location to your 4th generation Apple TV:

  1. Make sure your IP address is registered on the ExpressVPN website.
  2. Now, get the IP address of your MediaStreamer server. Go to ExpressVPN’s setup page and sign in. Enter the verification code ExpressVPN will send to your email address.
  3. On the right of the screen that opens, you will see the IP address of the MediaStreamer DNS server. Keep this tab open as you will need this information.
  4. Open your Apple TV and go to Settings, then Network. In the “Network” list, find your current Wi-Fi connection. Click this connection.
  5. In the menu that appears, choose “Wi-Fi” to access the settings. Now scroll down and select Configure DNS.
  6. Choose “Manual” from the options that appear. The manual DNS entry screen will open. Here, enter the MediaStreamer DNS IP address numbers displayed on the ExpressVPN tab you opened earlier. Close these windows.
  7. Restart your Apple TV. You can now stream your Netflix.

How to connect to a Netflix VPN on PC

The VPN software is compatible with computers and is easy to use. Here’s how it’s done:

  1. Open Netflix in your web browser and sign in.
  2. Download ExpressVPN to your computer, launch the app, and sign in. A popup tab will then open.
  3. Click the three horizontal dots icon in the Smart Location bar. A side menu will open with different locations that you can choose from – select the one you want to use.
  4. Press Connect (a large red round icon that looks like the on/off button on the remote control) and wait for the VPN to make a connection. Once connected, this red button will turn green.
  5. Minimize the ExpressVPN tab and refresh your Netflix tab. Offers for your selected region should now be available.
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Netflix VPN Blocked – Connect to a different server

Another way Netflix will recognize you with a VPN is when the DNS server location does not match your IP address. Often on Android or iOS devices, Netflix will try to bypass your Domain Name Server (DNS) setting and reveal the actual ISP server. If this does not match the IP address you are using, Netflix will notify you that you are using a VPN. A way around this is to connect to a different server. Fortunately, this is relatively easy to do:

  1. Open ExpressVPN and locate the connection status and server name.
  2. Go to the “Choose location” option to see the list of available servers and select the server location you want to use.
  3. Click the Run button and wait for the connection to take place.

Additional questions and answers

Why does Netflix care if I use a VPN?

Netflix does not have licenses to display the same content in all regions of the world. Because of these restrictions, Netflix does not want users around the world to use VPNs to access various geo-blocked shows. This could put Netflix in trouble with the major movie companies whose licenses the streaming company is selling.

Time for Netflix and Chill

Streaming Netflix with a VPN is relatively easy once you know how. Follow these easy steps, and soon you will be broadcasting your favorite shows from anywhere around the world.

The only thing you have to worry about is what show will air next!

Have you watched Netflix shows from a different region with a VPN? Did you use a method similar to the one described in this guide? Let us know in the comments section below.

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