Hulu cracks down on geo-blocking tricks

April 28, 2014 11.00 Europe/London By Robert Briel

HuluHulu has stepped up efforts to block non-US viewers who are using a Virtual Private Network (VPN) to mask their location.

The move is an attempt to prevent “pirates” from overseas from accessing videos without permission. Streaming services such as Hulu and Netflix only ave territorial rights and block users from outside the US.

Hulu visitors in Australia were the first to notice the new geo-blocking effort from Hulu, as they saw the following message when they were trying to access the service:

“Based on your IP address, we noticed you are trying to access Hulu through an anonymous proxy tool. Hulu is not currently available outside the US. If you’re in the US, you’ll need to disable your anonymizer to access videos on Hulu.”

There are numerous ways to circumvent geo-blocking and at the moment Hulu only seems to target well-known VPNs and their related IP addresses. The move by Hulu also affects people in the US, who want to surf the internet anonymously in order to protect their privacy.