WaveMark: Digital Image Watermarking
Using Daubechies' Wavelets and Error Correcting Coding

James Ze Wang and Gio Wiederhold
Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305

As more and more digital images are distributed on-line via the Internet and World-Wide Web, many copyright owners are concerned about protecting the copyright of digital images. This paper describes WaveMark, a novel wavelet-based multiresolution digital watermarking system for color images. The algorithm in WaveMark uses discrete wavelet transforms and error-correcting coding schemes to provide robust watermarking of digital images. Unlike other wavelet-based algorithms, our watermark recovery procedure does not require a match with an uncorrupted original image. Our algorithm uses Daubechies' advanced wavelets and extended Hamming codes to deal with problems associated with JPEG compression and random additive noise. In addition, the algorithm is able to sustain intentional disturbances introduced by professional robustness testing programs such as StirMark. The use of Daubechies' advanced wavelets makes the watermarked images more perceptively faithful than the images watermarked with the Haar wavelet transform. The watermark is adaptively applied to different frequency bands and different areas of the image, based on the smoothness of the areas, to increase robustness within the limits of perception. The system is practical for real-world applications, encoding or decoding images at the speed of less than one second each on a Pentium Pro PC.

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Last Modified: Fri Oct 2 00:35:07 PDT 1998
1998, James Z. Wang