Media Security & Forensics

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Media Security

Since copying and distributing digital media is easy, media copyrights are commonly violated by so-called digital pirates. Therefore, it is important that media content is sufficiently secured by encryption and watermarking techniques:

  • Media Encryption enables applications such as Digital Rights Management (DRM) and video scrambling, in order to prevent illegitimate copying of media content.
  • Media Watermarking enables the identification of users that illegally re-distribute or leak digital content. More specifically, a unique watermark is hidden in each legally-distributed video file, representing the ID of the receiver. If a malicious receiver illegally re-distributes or leaks his or her video, the watermark is extracted in order to identify the culprit.

At IDLab-MEDIA, we are experts in providing low-complexity media security techniques, such that they can be applied in low-delay scenarios without a high amount of processing power. Moreover, our methods have a very low impact on the video quality, such that legitimate users can fully enjoy their favorite media content.

Media Forensics

Recent machine learning advances enable computers to realistically alter media content. For example, it is easy to face swap any person’s face into an existing video. Although these technologies are often used in an innocent and humorous context, they can also have severe implications. For example, think of fake content of a president declaring war on another country. Therefore, it is very important to authenticate video content using forensic techniques: is a video real or fake? At IDLab-MEDIA, we perform high-quality research in this media forensics domain.

  • Paper accepted in Electronics: Fast Watermark Detection using Perceptual Hashes May 13, 2021Paper accepted in Electronics: Fast Watermark Detection using Perceptual Hashes
    Our paper titled “Fast Fallback Watermark Detection using Perceptual Hashes” was accepted for publication to the special issue “Recent Developments and Applications of Image Watermarking” of MDPI Electronics. This special issue belongs to the section “Computer Science & Engineering”. The paper proposes a fast alternative to the fallback watermarking detection system that was proposed in our ...
  • PhD – Pirates of the Film Industry: The Curse of the Forensic Watermark March 24, 2021PhD – Pirates of the Film Industry: The Curse of the Forensic Watermark
    Hannes Mareen (from IDLab-MEDIA) successfully defended his PhD on March 24, 2021. The defense was held in an entirely virtual setting. The thesis was supervised by Prof. Peter Lambert and Prof. Glenn Van Wallendael. The title of the PhD thesis is “Pirates of the Film Industry: The Curse of the Forensic Watermark“. The title slide of ...
  • Featured on Urgent.fm radiospecial ‘Why is this A.I.?’, regarding deepfakes & deepfake detection March 18, 2021Featured on Urgent.fm radiospecial 'Why is this A.I.?', regarding deepfakes & deepfake detection
    Illustration by @lize_vrolix. On March 18, 2021, IDLab-MEDIA was featured on the radiospecial titled ‘Why is this A.I.?‘ on Urgent.fm. Our members Prof. Peter Lambert and Dr. Hannes Mareen answered questions regarding deepfakes and deepfake detection using A.I. The entire radiospecial is available on to on Mixcloud. Peter Lambert’s part about deepfakes starts at 01h 33m 12s, ...
  • Paper presented at ICICT 2021: Implementation-Free Forensic Watermarking February 25, 2021Paper presented at ICICT 2021: Implementation-Free Forensic Watermarking
    We are glad to announce that our paper “Implementation-Free Forensic Watermarking for Adaptive Streaming using AB Watermarking” was accepted for presentation at the International Congress on Information and Communication Technology, in London, United Kingdom (held digitally due to the ongoing pandemic). The proceedings will be available soon here. Hannes Mareen presented his research on February 25, ...
  • Paper accepted in IEEE TCSVT: Forensic Watermarking Fallback System December 9, 2020Paper accepted in IEEE TCSVT: Forensic Watermarking Fallback System
    Our paper, “Camcording-resistant Forensic Watermarking Fallback System using Secondary Watermark Signal,” was accepted for publication in IEEE Transactions on Circuits and Systems for Video Technology (TCSVT). Public full-text on ResearchGate. To protect movies from digital piracy, forensic watermarking is used to track down pirates when they illegally leak copyright-protected videos. That is, each legitimate user gets ...
  • Paper accepted in IEEE Access: Rate-Distortion-Preserving Forensic Video Watermarking April 1, 2020Paper accepted in IEEE Access: Rate-Distortion-Preserving Forensic Video Watermarking
    Our paper, “Rate-Distortion-Preserving Forensic Watermarking using Quantization Parameter Variation“, has been accepted for publication in IEEE Access. Watermarking enables the identification of digital pirates that illegally redistribute copyright-protected videos. One of the main challenges is for the watermark to be imperceptible, while not increasing the video bit rate. Additionally, the system should be robust to attacks ...
  • Telenet’s .comdom app: safe sexting in a world of AI? December 5, 2019Telenet's .comdom app: safe sexting in a world of AI?
    Recently, the Belgian telecom provider Telenet presented the .comdom app, in collaboration with Child Focus. The .comdom app claims to enable safer sexting. It does so by adding a visible watermark containing the receiver’s name and phone number. The watermark is visible in ...
  • Funding granted for imec.icon project RHETORiC September 11, 2019Funding granted for imec.icon project RHETORiC
    RHETORiC – Reducing Hate with Editorial Tools for Online Reactions and Comments The internet is an important space for democratic debate, however, social media have become increasingly toxic and polarized. This makes it  difficult for media channels to manage online comments. Most content publishers in Belgium even disabled reader comments on their channels. Furthermore, because social ...
  • One year after winning the Agoria Prize 2017 December 20, 2018One year after winning the Agoria Prize 2017
    Every year, Scriptie vzw and Agoria Vlaanderen award the ‘Agoriaprijs’ (Agoria Prize) to the strongest technological and innovative master’s thesis in Flanders, Belgium. One year ago, Hannes Mareen won the 10th Agoria Prize 2017. Hannes is a PhD student at IDLab-MEDIA and performs research about video security. One year later, he looks back to his achievement ...
  • Paper accepted in IEEE Transactions on Information Forensics and Security (TIFS): Fast Encoding of Watermarked Videos November 1, 2018Paper accepted in IEEE Transactions on Information Forensics and Security (TIFS): Fast Encoding of Watermarked Videos
    Our paper, “A Scalable Architecture for Uncompressed-Domain Watermarked Videos“, has been accepted for publication in IEEE Transactions on Information Forensics and Security. Video watermarking is a well-established technology to help identify digital pirates when they illegally re-distribute multimedia content. In order to provide every client with a unique, watermarked video, traditional distribution architectures separately encode each ...

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