Earlier this month, we learned Spotify had begun chasing after users taking advantage of the streaming music service’s premium features. Now, we have a better idea just how many people fall into this category: two million. That’s a lot.
An updated version of Spotify’s recent SEC filing goes into more detail about what it classifies as “Unauthorized User Access”, including the aforementioned large number of those engaged in such activities:
On March 21, 2018, we detected instances of approximately two million users as of December 31, 2017, who have been suppressing advertisements without payment.
The filing goes on outline the “risks” unauthorised access poses to Spotify’s business:
We are at risk of attempts at unauthorized access to our Service, and failure to effectively prevent and remediate such attempts could have an adverse impact on our business, operating results, and financial condition.
Unauthorized access to our Service may cause us to misstate key performance indicators, which once discovered, corrected, and disclosed, could undermine investor confidence in the integrity of our key performance indicators and could cause our stock price to drop significantly.
Two million represents around 2.8 per cent of Spotify’s 71 million subscribers, so it’s definitely not insignificant in context and there’s no reason not to think the number will increase over time as more users find ways to avoid paying up.