×

Spotify Cracking Down on Users of Hacked Apps Designed to Steal Premium Features

Spotify, as it gears up to go public in an IPO expected later this month, is disabling access from unauthorized Android apps that let users circumvent advertising and usage restrictions from free accounts.

Spotify’s free accounts serve up ads between tracks and disallow on-demand playback on mobile devices (and mobile users also are limited to skipping a song six times per hour). The illicit apps hack the Spotify service to bypass those limits, to provide features available in Spotify Premium, which costs $9.99 per month.

Over the past several days, Spotify has been alerting users that their access from such hacked apps is being disabled — and it’s warning them that their accounts may be shut down if they continue to use such third-party apps, as first reported Monday by piracy-news site TorrentFreak. A Spotify rep confirmed that the company has sent the notices to applicable users but was unable to provide info about how many users were sent the warnings.

The notifications read: “Dear user: We detected abnormal activity on the app you are using so we have disabled it. Don’t worry — your Spotify account is safe. To access your Spotify account, simply uninstall any unauthorized or modified version of Spotify and download and install the Spotify app from the official Google Play Store.”

The message concludes, “If we detect repeated use of unauthorized apps in violation of our terms, we reserve all rights, including suspending or terminating your account.”

As of the end of 2017, Spotify reported 159 million monthly active users total, and 71 million paying premium subscribers.

The company generated nearly $5 billion in revenue in 2017 (4.1 billion euros), versus $3.6 billion in 2016. Its operating loss for 2017 was $461 million, compared with around $425 million in 2016. Spotify started in Stockholm, Sweden, but its official corporate headquarters is in Luxembourg.

More Digital

  • UFC 246 - McGregor vs Cerrone

    UFC Inks Facebook Pact for Exclusive Content to Push Pay-Per-View Fights (EXCLUSIVE)

    UFC has upped its investment in original content for Facebook — where it has more than 26 million global followers — to try to convert more mixed martial arts fans into premium pay-per-view buyers. Under the one-year deal between UFC and Facebook, the MMA promoter is producing three original shows for Facebook Watch. All of [...]

  • Peacock Launch: NBCUniversal Tries New Way

    Peacock Launch: NBCUniversal Tries New Way to Deliver Old-Fashioned Bundle of TV

    In the big unveiling Thursday on the “Saturday Night Live” stage at 30 Rock, NBCUniversal leaders described Peacock as a 21st century iteration of a broadcast network. For sure, the Comcast answer to the streaming wars is taking a broadcasters’ approach to programming and distributing the service that Comcast hopes might eventually represent the next [...]

  • Sorry for Your Loss - Elizabeth

    'Limetown,' 'Sorry For Your Loss' Canceled at Facebook Watch

    Facebook Watch has canceled two of its shows amid a scaling back of its scripted content. Both “Limetown” and “Sorry For Your Loss” have been canceled after their first and second seasons respectively, Variety has confirmed. Based on the podcast of the same name produced by Two Up, “Limetown” followed Lia Haddock (Jessica Biel), a journalist [...]

  • NBCU Peacock

    NBCU's Peacock Pricing and Launch Dates Announced

    Peacock will unfold its tail feathers this spring for Comcast customers — and will launch widely across the U.S. this summer. The streaming service from Comcast and NBCUniversal will be available April 15 in an early version for Comcast’s Xfinity TV and broadband-only customers. It will debut nationally July 15, including a free, ad-supported version [...]

  • Universal Music Japan Hires Spotify Exec

    Universal Music Japan Hires Former Spotify Exec Ichiro Tamaki

    Universal Music Japan announced today that Ichiro Tamaki has been named as Corporate Executive responsible for Digital Strategy, data analytics and platform partnerships, effective February 15. According to the announcement, as a core member of Universal Music Japan’s executive team, he will oversee the Data & Analytics and Platform Partnerships teams, and will be responsible [...]

  • netflix debt

    Netflix Projected to Spend More Than $17 Billion on Content in 2020

    Netflix is keeping its foot pressed firmly on the gas pedal in the streaming-video road race. The streamer will invest around $17.3 billion this year in content on a cash basis, according to a new forecast by Wall Street firm BMO Capital Markets. That’s up from around $15.3 billion in 2019. And Netflix is not [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content