Spotify has started sending warning emails to users who have been using hacked app to access the Spotify Premium for free, disabling the accounts until the music streaming service's official app is installed.
Until now, Spotify has not invested much effort in cracking down on the hacked versions of its app. However, with the music streaming service gearing up to go public, it appears that Spotify is looking to maximize the number of its paying customers.
Modified Spotify App To Unlock Premium Perks
Last month, Spotify revealed that it had 70 million paid subscribers, which was twice the number of paid subscribers for rival Apple Music.
Spotify, however, has about 160 million total users across the world, with the about 90 million users on the free tier of the music streaming service. The free version of Spotify places restrictions on skipping tracks and only allows shuffle-only playback, with advertisements.
Hackers, however, have created modified Spotify apps that remove most of these restrictions. All users have to do is to install the modified app and log in using their free Spotify account. The accounts on these hacked apps do not change from free to Premium though, so high-quality streaming is still unavailable, but they do get to enjoy Premium perks such as unlimited skips.
Spotify Premium Hack Crackdown
According to a TorrentFreak report, it is unclear why Spotify has turned a blind eye to these hacked apps for so long. However, the music streaming service has started cracking down on them, with emails sent to users who have been using the modified Spotify software.
"We detected abnormal activity on the app you are using so we have disabled it. Don't worry - your Spotify account is safe," said the email from Spotify. Users who would like to reactivate their Spotify account will have to uninstall the unofficial version of the music streaming service's app, download the official version, and log in.
The email, however, also comes with a stronger warning. "If we detect repeated use of unauthorized apps in violation of our terms, we reserve all rights, including suspending or terminating your account," the email noted.
It is currently unclear how far Spotify will go to eliminate the usage of the hacked apps. Some people who were using modified Spotify apps have reported that they have stopped working, while others said that they are still operational.
Spotify may be looking to clean up the hacked apps before its planned IPO, which is expected to value the company at $23 billion. Eliminating the modified apps may push more people to sign up as Premium users, providing a boost to its coffers.