Soft Computing

, Volume 19, Issue 7, pp 1905–1919 | Cite as

Fragile watermarking using Karhunen–Loève transform: the KLT-F approach

  • Marco Botta
  • Davide Cavagnino
  • Victor PomponiuEmail author
Methodologies and Application


The paper presents a fragile watermarking technique that may be used to discover image manipulations at block level. The proposed algorithm, based on the Karhunen–Loève linear transform (KLT), modifies some of the KLT coefficients obtained from a secret base (defined by a secret key image) so that they contain a binary pseudo-random message. A genetic algorithm is used to compensate for rounding errors introduced by inverse transforming in the integer pixel domain. An extensive experimentation has been performed to test the effectiveness of the method and to show the sensitivity of the algorithm to single pixel modifications (also as a function of the number of modified coefficients). A comparison with other fragile watermarking methods is reported. It should be noted that the proposed approach results in both a high PSNR (more than 53 dB on average) and a high subjective quality. The system may be tested online by submitting images to be watermarked and subsequently verifying the presence of modifications in a previously marked image.


Fragile watermarking Content authentication Karhunen–Loève transform Genetic algorithms  Data security 

Supplementary material

500_2014_1373_MOESM1_ESM.mht (8 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (mht 8 KB)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Marco Botta
    • 1
  • Davide Cavagnino
    • 1
  • Victor Pomponiu
    • 2
    Email author
  1. 1.Dipartimento di InformaticaUniversità degli Studi di TorinoTorinoItaly
  2. 2.Department of RadiologyUniversity of PittsburghPittsburghUSA

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