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This paper presents a hardware implementation of a digital watermarking system that can insert invisible, semifragile watermark information into compressed video streams in real time. The watermark embedding is processed in the discrete cosine transform domain. To achieve high performance, the proposed system architecture employs pipeline structure and uses parallelism. Hardware implementation using field programmable gate array has been done, and an experiment was carried out using a custom versatile breadboard for overall performance evaluation. Experimental results show that a hardware-based video authentication system using this watermarking technique features minimum video quality degradation and can withstand certain potential attacks, i.e., cover-up attacks, cropping, and segment removal on video sequences. Furthermore, the proposed hardware-based watermarking system features low power consumption, low cost implementation, high processing speed, and reliability.