Irdeto was granted three patents for its digital watermarking technology, designed specifically for set-top boxes.
The United States Patent and Trademark Office is still reviewing another eight applications associated with Irdeto’s watermarking, the company said.
Irdeto enables content to be watermarked centrally, the company says, without requiring integration with the VOD server or set-top box.
The company expects the capability to make content traceable to individual household accounts will discourage piracy, which in turn will encourage film studios that want to collapse the release windows in response to rapidly decreasing DVD sales.
“As content owners and operators continue to explore possibilities to deliver premium content services into the home to drive new revenue and growth, the technology needed to manage digital piracy becomes a critical part of the equation,” said Andrew Wajs, chief technology officer for Irdeto.
“The more valuable the content, the more rigorous the security measures applied to it must be,” he continued. “Irdeto’s watermarking technology is unique in that it can be applied to any broadcast receiver or set-top box currently in use, as well as work with all legacy and already-deployed conditional access systems, meaning content owners can almost instantaneously identify illegally distributed content, effectively police offenders and ensure the premium content business model remains viable.”
Irdeto’s solution can detect pirated content on peer-to-peer sharing networks by applying an invisible “watermark” that ties redistributed content back to any set-top box from which it originated; from there, content owners can identify and shut down illegal distribution networks, the company explained. In the event of an attack, the solution can be renewed from the headend almost instantly without requiring updates to the box itself, enabling unparalleled renewability, scalability and ease of deployment.