It starts with your parents. They sign up for Netflix so they can watch episodes of Property Brothers whenever they want. Then you ask for the password, and start making your way through Friday Night Lights. Then you share the account information with a roommate, so she can finally finish House of Cards. Before long, a friend of a friend of a friend is using your mom and dad’s Netflix to marathon Family Guy, and everything has gone to hell.
That may no longer be an issue.
Earlier this week, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that sharing online passwords could be considered a federal crime under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act. Things got this far thanks to David Nosal, a former employee of search firm Korn/Ferry who “used the password of a person still with the company to download information from Korn/Ferry’s database for use at [his] new firm,” according to Fusion. Nosal was charged with hacking.