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The difficult task of steganalysis, or the detection of the presence of hidden data, can be greatly aided by exploiting the correlations inherent in typical host or cover signals. In particular, several effective image steganalysis techniques are based on the strong interpixel dependencies exhibited by natural images. Thus, existing theoretical benchmarks based on independent and identically distributed (i.i.d.) models for the cover data underestimate attainable steganalysis performance and, hence, overestimate the security of the steganography technique used for hiding the data. In this paper, we investigate detection-theoretic performance benchmarks for steganalysis when the cover data are modeled as a Markov chain. The main application explored here is steganalysis of data hidden in images. While the Markov chain model does not completely capture the spatial dependencies, it provides an analytically tractable framework whose predictions are consistent with the performance of practical steganalysis algorithms that account for spatial dependencies. Numerical results are provided for image steganalysis of spread-spectrum and perturbed quantization data hiding.
Information Forensics and Security, IEEE Transactions on (Volume:1 , Issue: 2 )
Date of Publication: June 2006