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A secure, imperceptible yet perceptually salient, spread spectrum watermark for multimedia

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4 Author(s)
Cox, Ingemar J. ; NEC Res. Inst., Princeton, NJ, USA ; Kilian, Joe ; Leighton, T. ; Shamoon, T.

We describe a digital watermarking method for use in audio, image, video and multimedia data. We argue that a watermark must be placed in perceptually significant components of a signal if it is to be robust to common signal distortions and malicious attack. However, it is well known that modification of these components can lead to a perceptual degradation of the signal. To avoid this, we propose to insert a watermark into the spectral components of the data using techniques analogous to spread spectrum communications, hiding a narrow band signal in a wideband channel that is the data. The watermark is difficult for an attacker to remove, even when several individuals conspire together with independently water-marked copies of the data. It is also robust to common signal and geometric distortions such as digital-to-analog and analog-to-digital conversion, resampling, and requantization, including dithering and recompression and rotation, translation, cropping and scaling. The same digital watermarking algorithm can be applied to all three media under consideration with only minor modifications, making it especially appropriate for multimedia products. Retrieval of the watermark unambiguously identifies the owner, and the watermark can be constructed to make counterfeiting almost impossible. Experimental results are presented to support these claims

Published in:

Southcon/96. Conference Record

Date of Conference:

25-27 Jun 1996