In recent years, private podcasting has become increasingly popular. Individual podcast creators are using private podcasts as a way to monetize their show (by charging a subscription for access), while some companies are using private podcasts for internal training programs.
How private, password-protected podcasts work
In private podcasting, there are different levels of security (privacy) that are possible:
- Low security: One RSS username/password that is shared by all members.
- Medium security: Employees or subscribers register for a unique private feed. Each "subscriber" gets a custom RSS feed, which they can then add to their podcast player.
- High security: a custom podcast app is built that ensures nothing is shareable/downloaded. Each employee/subscriber must register and log in via SSO (single sign-on).
In terms of security, my recommendation is that companies treat private podcasts the same way they treat internal email. Employees should know not to share emails, but there's nothing (technically) stopping them from doing so. The same is true for podcast audio.
Anything that's published on the public internet carries the risk of being discovered, and shared, by non-intended recipients. (Even when it's password protected). This is especially true for podcasts because audio files are downloaded by individuals to their podcast players.
Furthermore, using simple screen recording applications, anyone could capture your audio (even if encrypted). There is, essentially, no way to make audio on the internet completely private. We recommend exercising your discretion when publishing content on private podcasts!
How can I create a password-protected private podcast?
If you're looking to create a private podcast for your company, you'll want to use a podcast hosting platform that supports the level of privacy you're looking for.
- Transistor (pricing starts at $19/month for 50 subscribers): subscribers can add themselves via an invite link, and will receive a unique RSS feed. Transistor also makes it easy for subscribers to add their private feed to Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Overcast, Pocket Casts, and more. You can also delete a subscriber, and they'll no longer have access to the podcast. Transistor is one of the only providers that allows subscribers to receive new episodes by email.
- Storyboard (pricing starts at $50/month for 50 subscribers): single sign on (SSO) and other enterprise features available.
- uStudio (pricing starts at $500/month): they also offer SSO authentication, and provide custom mobile and desktop apps for employees to use.
Want to try a private podcast demo?
Here's a sample invite link. Once you've provided your email address, the system will send you an onboarding email to help you add it to your podcast player.