If you’re here, chances are you’ve seen this dreaded Netflix proxy error and desperately looking to get rid of that *UGHH* that comes with it! Before getting rid of it, you should know what actually it is?
What is the Netflix Proxy Error?
Whenever you come across a Netflix proxy error, it simply means that you’re using some cloaking service to hide your IP (using a smart DNS proxy, or VPN) and access Netflix libraries that are not usually available in your region. Your IP is a small number that tells websites about your location.
Smart DNS proxy server and VPNs are all both forms of third-party methods that help you change your location on the internet. Netflix and other streaming services understandably don’t like this and will do whatever is in their power (albeit unsuccessfully 😉) to keep you from accessing locked content.
Successfully masking, or cloaking your IP allows you to bypass geo-restrictions and access the Netflix library of your choice. This basically means you can access the US version of Netflix libraries from anywhere you happen to be. Yes – ANYWHERE!
So why is Netflix so strict against IP masking generally or VPNs particularly?
How to Fix Netflix Proxy Error (Five Easy Steps)
If you’re not sure which VPN app you should opt for (‘cause there’s a ton of them out there) here’s a tried and tested list of the Best VPNs for dealing with the Netflix proxy error:
Note: In case (very rare!) the error persists, you can try changing the server or location, and clearing your cookies and browser cache. Or you can always look at the VPN provider’s 24/7 chat support!
If you’re in it for the long haul and want to know what this annoying little, party-pooping, buzz-killing, pain-in-the-a**, proxy error really is, read on!
Best VPNs To Fix The Netflix Proxy Error
We’re sure by now you must be wondering which VPN would be the best choice to bypass region restrictions and access the hidden Netflix libraries.
Worry not, for we’ve done the work, and here’s a comprehensive list of the best VPNs to get rid of the Netflix proxy error:
1. ExpressVPN – The Best VPN For Netflix Proxy Error
ExpressVPN has reliably and consistently gotten around the Netflix geo-restrictions in most regions. Including the most common ones such as the US, UK, Canada, and Australia. It can simultaneously be configured on three devices.
If you’re ever confused about which server is working, of if the VPN doesn’t work, they have a superb 24/7 live chat support feature.
There’s also a smart DNS proxy included in the ExpressVPN premium plan which can help you watch Netflix on devices such as XBOX, Play Station, Apple TV, android TV among many others.
To top it all off, they offer a 30-day money-back guarantee!
- Reliably unblocks Netflix
- Fast speeds
- Servers in 94 countries
- Strong security
- Smart DNS included
- 24/7 chat support
- Slightly costly
- Only 5 devices can be connected simultaneously
NordVPN bypasses the restrictions and allows you to watch Netflix, like the Vikings bypassed all obstacles thrown at them. It will unblock Netflix catalogs for 6 main regions including the US and Japan (both are our favorite)!
All of their servers will definitely unblock Netflix, though most of them will redirect to the American version (because it’s the most popular one out there). This makes NordVPN a specialized Netflix unblocker!
With a 30-day money-back guarantee and live chat support, you’ll not regret signing up to this one!
- Unblocks Netflix on any of its servers
- Fast speeds
- 6 devices can be used simultaneously
- Zero logs maintained
- The desktop version is slightly slower
Surfshark is known for being amongst the cheaper yet secure VPNs available. It will unblock most Netflix catalogs and when it can’t, it redirects to the US version. With really great chat support and a 30-day money-back guarantee, you won’t be disappointed.
- Reliable connections
- Fast speeds
- Unblocks most Netflix catalogs
- Unlimited devices can be connected
- Comparatively smaller server network
- Server speeds can sometimes fluctuate
Again, a low-budget option that does the work perfectly well. CyberGhost bypasses the Netflix content restrictions and unlocks Netflix libraries easily and is best known to unlock the US version of Netflix. With apps available for all platforms, CyberGhost isn’t messing around.
With a 45-day money-back guarantee this one should not be taken lightly.
- Unblocks Netflix in 20+ countries
- Fast speeds
- Strong security
- Zero logs policy
- 6 connections simultaneously
- Comparatively small server network
- Chat support is not available 24/7
Although comparatively new and a smaller VPN, it does unlock Netflix libraries . For accessing content from a specific country instead of a whole region, IPVanish is your go-to. It unlocks Netflix in most countries as compared to other providers and this is what made us add IPVanish to this list.
A 30-day money-back guarantee is also provided.
- Unblocks Netflix reliably
- Budget friendly
- 24/7 live Support
- Fast streaming speed
- Strong security protocols
- Some servers are unreliable in unblocking Netflix
- Only unblocks Netflix US
Why does Netflix ban VPNs and proxies?
Back in its early days, Netflix was just available in the US region. And everybody else had to use VPN server or proxies to access the best streaming platform in the world. Talk about the land of opportunity!
So, what changed? When Netflix went global, the problems of licensing rights began to surface. Many movies and shows are routed and distributed in the world by designated media distribution companies. And these companies often have restrictions on where the movie CAN be watched. So, understandably, Netflix couldn’t go against the distributors and show geo-restricted content everywhere. Hence – the need to block IP address, VPN server and proxies.
In early 2016, Netflix started an aggressive crackdown on proxies and free VPN services. Mainly to comply with the copyright laws and the pressure from media owners. The crackdown is so severe that Netflix blocks any IP address using VPN or proxy – even when they’re using VPNs in their own country (for security reasons, YES, VPN server is really secure when it comes to data privacy)
Despite all of this, there is no stopping a streamer from getting their binge on, and this means the need to unlock Netflix regions via VPN for more and more content is alive and kickin’. And it doesn’t look like stopping any time soon.
Why Use a VPN to Unblock Netflix?
Okay, so a VPN or proxy unlocks tons of hidden Netflix library – but do you really need it?
Let’s look at some facts:
- Netflix US version, priced at almost $14/mo has almost 5,600 different titles in its catalog, and new shows keep releasing a dime a dozen.
- Netflix UK version, priced at about $13/mo has close to about 3,000 titles.
- Netflix Japan version has almost 6,500 titles for $12/mo.
So, with a very slight difference in cost, the value for money is almost 2x. And the amount of absolutely jaw-dropping titles is substantial, to say the least. We know, it’s unfair to A LOT of Netflix fans!
Imagine the kinds of movies you can unlock with just a small software! Apart from this, a VPN is amongst the MOST secure ways of surfing the internet!
And hence, we rest our case – the need for a reliable VPN server to bypass the Netflix proxy error is justified!
How Does the Netflix Proxy Error Work?
The proxy error, or banning any masked IP address is usually done using two techniques, identifying and blacklisting, and DNS filtering. Netflix categorically hasn’t ever mentioned how they do it, but we can assume it must be following either of these two.
Blacklisting the Proxy and VPN Services IP Addresses
Usually what happens is that whenever we use a VPN server or proxy server, our IP address, short for Internet Protocol, is changed to our desired region. This IP address is public and can be easily accessed by anyone on the internet. Don’t worry, this IP only contains your location and nothing else.
While using a VPN, your IP address is effectively changed. The catch here is that VPN providers and proxy servers have only a limited number of IP addresses that can be associated with a user at a given time. So, whenever, multiple users use the same IP, they can be detected and blocked.
To understand this one, we need to explore what Smart DNS proxy really is. DNS stands for Domain Name System. It is how the names of websites are actually matched to the address of websites. Basically, assigning names to the numbers in our IP addresses.
This technique comes into play majorly on devices that don’t support VPNs, such as Roku, Smart TV, XBOX, Play Station. Whenever we access Netflix on these devices, a request is sent to the DNS server for matching the IP and showing content that is unlocked in that region.
When we use VPNs, this DNS request isn’t matched, and this mismatch is detected by Netflix. And you’ll see a Netflix proxy error code: M7111. Despite many VPN providers claiming they route DNS traffic as well – this claim is far from the truth. Only a select few VPN providers provide complete anonymity and IP masking.
Related article: 19 Netflix Error Codes & Fixes
How do VPNs get rid of the Netflix proxy error?
The demand for unblocking Netflix library is rising as more and more geo-restricted Netflix titles are rolling out.
We’ll discuss the three most common techniques (only for the techies around!).
A VPN essentially masks a user’s IP using encryption and re-routes it through the location chosen by the user. This means it’s hard to track down a VPN user. VPN providers actually have servers with IP addresses that can be assigned to the VPN users for routing their traffic.
The problem here is that no VPN provider worth a dime ever shares how they actually mask IPs. It’s a trade secret after all. However, we’ve managed to come up with a plausible solution to how it’s done. The VPN providers get actual locations to place their servers in, a lot of servers in the same location is known as a server farm.
Now, Netflix can easily track and block traffic from huge server farms. This means these server farms aren’t as big as we can imagine. And they must be using residential IP addresses instead. These un-seeming IP addresses aren’t possible to track since they can literally be in billions.
These servers are the highways via which VPNs route the user’s traffic. And in case Netflix app can identify and block a certain IP, the VPN provider can always switch to another server and the cycle keeps going until you finally find a server that lets you access Netflix.
Smart DNS Proxy
A smart DNS works by changing the IP addresses when requested by a certain service e.g., Netflix. This means when Netflix asks for the user’s IP address, the DNS server actually returns an IP of the server in the user’s location of choice (if you’ve connected to a US server, an IP from the US will be returned). This swap of IP tricks Netflix into thinking the user is in the US when they’re not. Thereby, evading the geo-restrictions on content and allowing you to stream Netflix with ease.
However, it must be kept in mind that using a DNS proxy isn’t as safe as a VPN because it doesn’t encrypt your personal information.
What most reliable VPN providers do nowadays?
Due to the limited number of servers available to VPN services providers, they combine both DNS and VPN to allow for the smooth running of affairs for both themselves and their users. VPN services now their own DNS servers that alter the IP and then route it through the VPN, making the process even harder to track, and also reduces the load on their servers.
What Should We Use for Avoiding the Netflix Proxy Error?
Short answer: Get a VPN!
Long answer: Although both VPN and DNS accomplish the same task, they vary hugely in how they accomplish it. The DNS server simply alters the IP address it’s returning, while a VPN actually encrypts the data and then alters the IP. This means more security AND fewer chances of being blocked by Netflix.
The Worst VPNs for fixing the Netflix Proxy Error!
We have braved this battle too!
After hours of research, testing, and thwarting countless malicious hacking attempts to breach our security, we have compiled a list of the best VPNs that fix the Netflix Proxy Error instantly. And in the process, we identified some free VPN providers that aren’t worth their talk and actually put your security at potential harm.
Free VPNs You Should Definitely Avoid!
The best way to accessing Netflix geo-blocked content is by using a VPN. It’s secure, reliable and does the work. Easy to install on your device or browser, without any technical knowledge, a VPN is the streamer’s best friend! However, be ware of free VPN services at all costs! They won’t help you watch Netflix.
Frequently Asked Questions – FAQs
Can you get banned from Netflix?
How can I check if Netflix servers are down?
Is Netflix app better than the browser?