It is no news that Canadians are deprived of some amazing streaming platforms that Americans have full access to. Some famous examples are Hulu and HBO. If we talk about Netflix even, American Netflix has more shows and movies than Netflix Canada. Popular shows like Dexter, Criminal Minds, and Parks and Recreation are only available on Netflix US.
By using a VPN, you can access all international streaming sites in Canada. With a VPN, you can simply connect to a US server and even unblock Hulu in Canada – a streaming platform with one of the toughest geo-blocks. But not all VPNs can bypass geo-blocks, and most of the time, you will get the proxy error message on your screens and zero access to the site. Most popular streaming sites have implemented VPN-detection features that block VPN traffic, thus restricting access.
Here is a list of some popular streaming sites in Canada that block VPNs:
- HBO Now
- Amazon Prime Video
- Sling TV
- YouTube TV
These are just a few streaming sites that are not available in Canada and block VPN traffic as well. If you are a fan of American shows and series, then using a VPN is the only way to access them in Canada – but if you are getting the proxy error then we have got you covered. Let’s see how you can bypass VPN blocks and stream your favorite American shows in Canada.
How to Bypass VPN blocks and watch US shows in Canada
If you are trying to access American Netflix, Hulu, or other geo-restricted streaming platforms in Canada, but keep getting the proxy error, here are some ways to bypass VPN block and get unrestricted to streaming sites in Canada:
1. Switch between different VPN servers
Streaming sites like Netflix cannot unblock all IP addresses. Therefore, if the VPN server you are connected to gives the proxy error, you can always disconnect and reconnect to a different server location. This way, you will get a new IP address that will not be part of the blacklist. You can even ask customer support for a server that works with the streaming service you want to access in Canada.
Make sure to choose a VPN with a high number of servers because it also means they have a sizable number of IP addresses, so you can easily switch between IPs to get access.
2. Use a different VPN protocol
Most VPNs offer multiple protocols for various purposes. Some protocols are best for privacy, while some offer fast performance. Some of the most common protocols used by VPNs include OpenVPN, L2TP, PPTP, IPSec, IKEv2, and more. If you are getting the proxy error on your first try, then you can go to the settings of your VPN and change protocols. That’s it; you can now check whether the other protocol helps with VPN block or not. If it still gives the proxy error, then you can choose a different protocol.
3. Change VPN Ports
A port is used to control the flow of information between two points. In VPNs, ports are used by different protocols to handle incoming and outcoming information. To bypass the VPN block, you can change VPN ports. Here are some common ports you need to know about to bypass VPN blocks:
- TCP port 443: When you are accessing sites that need important information like credit card details, your internet uses Port 443 which is a standard encrypted protocol. You can use this port to access streaming sites and sidestep the VPN block because it is never blocked by sites as the exchange of important information is possible without it.
- TCP port 80: This port is used by HTTP, which is everywhere on the web. This port is never blocked, so it is a good option for bypassing VPN blocks.
You can change ports easily via a VPN application on your device. If it doesn’t allow you to change ports, you can do it manually by changing the OpenVPN configuration file that is available on the VPN website. If it gets too technical for you, you can even contact your VPN provider before making changes.
How do streaming services detect & block VPNs?
There are several ways streaming services can detect and block VPN users from accessing their content. Below we have covered the most common methods used to detect and block VPN traffic:
1. IP Blocking
The most common method used by streaming services to detect and block VPNs is through IP address. Almost all big streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, and more keep a list of IP addresses of VPN servers and blacklist traffic from these IPs immediately. That is one of the major reasons why VPN services frequently update their IP addresses to get newer ones.
In such cases, you can connect to a different VPN server to get a fresh IP address that is not included in the blacklist.
2. Port Blocking
The second method used by streaming services to detect and block VPN traffic is called port blocking. This is done by using a firewall to block ports used by VPN services. These ports include 1194 (UDP), 1723 (TCP), 500 (UDP), 4500 (UDP), 1701 (UDP), and more. So, if traffic is detected using one of these ports, the streaming service will block access.
Just like IP blocking, there is a way around port blocking as well. Some VPN services offer a feature that disguises your VPN traffic as regular HTTP traffic. Hence, the streaming platform cannot identify the traffic, thus no blocking.
3. Deep Packet Inspection
This method is more thorough but is rarely used by streaming services. It is mostly used by ISPs in countries with heavy censorship and internet restrictions. This technology filters the user’s entire internet traffic to detect VPN and block it altogether. However, some VPNs offer camouflage technology that cloaks your VPN traffic to bypass deep packet inspection and to gain unrestricted access to blocked sites.
Stream Hulu, HBO, and more in Canada If you want to bypass VPN blocks and stream popular sites in Canada like Hulu, HBO Max, YouTube TV, and more then you are going to need a VPN that works with popular streaming sites. By using a VPN that regularly refreshes their IP address, you will be able to unblock any international streaming platform in Canada with ease. Happy streaming.