The Netflix proxy error is something of a cat-and-mouse game, but many VPNs try to always have at least one server running that works for US Netflix. It is therefore always worth contacting a provider’s support to find out if there is a particular server you should connect to for Netflix access.
"Oops, something went wrong... Streaming Error. You seem to be using an unblocker or proxy. Please turn off any of these services and try again. For more help, visit nexflix.com/proxy."
A VPN will proxy your entire internet connection, usually at just the click of a button, once a VPN app is installed. VPN connections are usually heavily encrypted, which makes them a little slower than equivalent unencrypted proxy connections.
This is offset, however, by the fact that commercial VPN services invest heavily in high-quality servers and sometimes even their own network infrastructure. In practice, VPNs usually provide the fastest proxy experience available, resulting in the smoothest Netflix streaming possible.
We are based in the UK, but thanks to the magic of VPNs, we can watch the entire US catalog of titles! Because it proxies the entire internet connection, a VPN works very well with the Netflix app on mobile devices.
- Easy to setup and use
- Fast compared to most conventional proxies
- Works with the Netflix app on mobile devices
- Has lots of other uses, such as providing privacy and security on the internet. Check out our VPN Beginners Guide to find out more
- Not free
- Many VPN services are blocked by Netflix
Note that free VPN services do exist, but not a single one we have tested works with Netflix. And even if you found one that did, the data and/or bandwidth limits placed on all free VPN services would make watching Netflix an impractical proposition.
By far the biggest issue with using a VPN for Netflix is that, thanks to pressure from copyright holders, Netflix blocks all IPs known to belong to proxy or VPN providers. VPN services are much more popular than commercial proxy services, and so are disproportionately affected by these blocks. This means that most VPNs on the market do not unblock Netflix, and instead result in a Netflix proxy error message.
Many (often smaller) VPN providers have consequently given up, but others now do good business offering access to Netflix using tactics such as regularly replenishing IP pools and deploying fancy DNS routing.
Above, you can see the standard Netflix proxy error warning. If you see it, your first port of call should be to contact your proxy or VPN provider.
Please check out our Netflix VPN page for a detailed look at VPNs that should still work for Netflix. We do always strongly recommend, however, taking full advantage of any free trials and money back guarantees on offer to check for yourself that you can access Netflix without problems.
Given the volatility of the situation, it is also worth considering paying for a VPN one month at a time, rather than taking out long-term subscription.
Can I get blocked by Netflix?
Here’s the thing. Netflix itself has never really been bothered about people using proxies and VPNs to access its services from different regions. Indeed, for a long time did nothing to stop it, and its own content is equally available in all markets.
The content producers it licenses from, though, are not so open-minded. They make handsome profits from striking exclusive deals with regional networks in markets around the world. If people in those regions can just access their content on Netflix, then such deals are worthless
Netflix introduced the proxy and VPN blocks in order to keep its content producers happy, but has declined to close a big stable door. It could require that any account be registered to a physical address in a particular country, and have payment details belonging to a bank in that country in order to access content for that country. But it doesn’t.
If you can bypass its proxy and VPN IP blocks, then you can login and watch programs using your regular Netflix account. It doesn't matter if you are a UK subscriber, and Australian subscriber or a German subscriber - all of the extra content will be made available. Yay!
Useful Netflix Guides
To get sensible access to the full library of Netflix content (or to access regional content from elsewhere) you are going to have to pay for it.
VPNs offer by far the best value for money in this regard. In addition to accessing Netflix, they will protect your privacy, prevent hacking on public WiFi networks, help evade censorship, and allow you to torrent safely.
Just be sure to check that the service can be used to bypass the Netflix proxy ban before handing over your hard-earned cash.
Image credit: By Ink Drop/Shutterstock.