Search by Keyword
Search or browse for technologies available for licensing.
Printer Friendly Version
Audio Watermarking and Data-Hiding
The technology enables the insertion and recovery of hidden data in audio files through manipulation of the relative phase of harmonically related components of a host audio signal.
Data hiding in video and audio, is of interest for the protection of copyrighted digital media, and to the government for information systems security and for covert (stegnographic) communications.
It can also be used in forensic applications for inserting hidden data into audio files for the authentication of spoken words and other sounds, and in the music business for the monitoring of the songs over broadcast radio.
The method is aurally transparent for hidden data transmission rates up to 160 bits/sec. It takes advantage of the fact that the human auditory system, although it has a very high dynamic range, is unable to perceive absolute monaural phase. Without the key, the hidden data is undetectable, both to the human listener and via blind signal processing attacks. The method is both aurally transparent and robust and can be applied to both analog and digital audio signals. The approach has been tested for the survival of the data through compression to such audio file formats as MP3 and decompression and through conversion to analog form (tape recordings) and back. The data survives MPEG I layer III (MP3) compression / decompression as well as digital to analog to digital conversion. Conversion of digital files to analog and back to digital has been achieved with error rates of less than 10%, which, with appropriate forward error correction, would enable robust steganographic communication and/or data tagging.
Intellectual Property Status:
For Additional Information or for Licensing Opportunities:
Patrick Emmerling, Ph.D.
Technology Licensing Manager
Office of Technology Transfer
Discover the Future
Subscribe to the Technology Transfer RSS feed, and be notified when new topics are added to our Technology listings.