Forensic watermarking provides an efficient deterrent against pirated copies of content.
It is the means by which a unique identifying code is inserted into a media asset. By adding a unique identity disseminated throughout a piece of media, that content, along with its owner, becomes identifiable.
Digital watermarks are used to enforce contractual compliance between a content owner and the intended recipient. It provides proof of misuse and a link back to the source of a leakage. It is one of the most powerful means to protect media content.
NexGuard is the most powerful and widely deployed forensic watermarking technology in the world.
The Apache SmartEmbedder (ASE) is a module that allows the integration of the NexGuard-Streaming technology into a content distribution workflow. It is intended to organize per-session water- marking for MP4 file download mode and ABR streaming mode.
It is available on Red Hat/Centos 6, Red Hat/Centos 7 and Ubuntu 14.
For installation and configuration please refer to the NexGuard-Streaming Apache SmartEmbedder documentation.
The input to ASE is content prepared with the NexGuard-Streaming Preprocessor (which includes H.264 encoding) and is stored on disk as a .mmrk preprocessed file. The output from ASE is byte range of watermarked MP4 with a unique ID. The NexGuard video watermark is imperceptible. The solution enables forensic tracking and is a deterrent against content theft.
Watermarked MP4 progressive files (a.k.a. 'mmrk' files) with multiple bit rate renditions can be grouped in a manifest file with the extension 'smil' or 'ism'. Thus, customers can identify which files have been encoded at the same time with different bit rates. Here is an example with 2 bit rate renditions:
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?> <smil xmlns="http://www.w3.org/2001/SMIL20/Language"> <body> <switch> <video src="myFile__750kbps.mp4" systemBitrate="750000"/> <video src="myFile_1500kbps.mp4" systemBitrate="1500000"/> </switch> </body> </smil>
The Apache server is started and its home page is accessible from any web browser:
At least one 'mmrk' file has been copied in the Apache server DocumentRoot
The path consists of the following elements:
|streampath||stream path without the extension (e.g. 'myFolder/myStream-1000Kbps')|
|txid||payload value to smart embed (in hexadecimal)|
|manifest-ext||manifest extension ('smil' or 'ism')|
Unified Origin configuration¶
The Unified Origin is configured following HTTP Proxy, so using the
IsmProxyPass directive, e.g.
<Directory /var/www/ase> IsmProxyPass http://ase-hostname/ </Directory>
The IsmProxyPass directive will map a request containing 'ase' in it's patch to the apache-smart-embedder. There should be no 'ase' directory on disk.
The URL for accessing a SmartEmbedded stream is different from the standard Unified Streaming URL since a transaction ID must be specified:
|strname||stream name without extension (folder and stream path, e.g. myFolder/myStream)|
|txID||unique transaction identifier for each client (hexadecimal value)|
|ext||media extension ('mp4' or 'smil')|
|post-fix||option information specific to player technology (e.g. 'Manifest' for Smooth Streaming, '.m3u8' for HLS)|
Single bit rate¶
For single bit rate, the media type use is 'mp4'. The myID parameter is a
per-session identifier as a hexadecimal number without the
From the received manifest file, then any chunk (or fragment) can be downloaded, for instance HLS:
Adaptive bit rate¶
For adaptive bit rate, the media type use is 'ism'.
From the received manifest file, then any chunk (or fragment) can be downloaded, for instance for HLS: