Multimedia Tools and Applications

, Volume 77, Issue 20, pp 26601–26634 | Cite as

Digital image ownership authentication via camouflaged unseen-visible watermarking

  • Oswaldo Ulises Juarez-Sandoval
  • Manuel Cedillo-HernandezEmail author
  • Mariko Nakano-Miyatake
  • Antonio Cedillo-Hernandez
  • Hector Perez-Meana


In recent years, end users can easily capture digital images using several devices, such as smartphones, mobile devices and digital imaging cameras, allowing such images to be easily copied, manipulated, transmitted or format converted without any restrictions. This fact suggests the necessity to develop digital tools, such as digital watermarking, to solve the issues associated with copyright protection and ownership authentication of digital images. To claim the ownership of a digital image, we propose a camouflaged, unseen-visible watermarking technique based on luminance and texture properties in conjunction with an image enhancement criterion. The proposed method has some advantages over invisible and visible watermarking methodologies in terms of readability and imperceptibility of the watermark, respectively. The experimental results demonstrate that the proposed scheme is effective and applicable for digital images on a variety of topics, including natural scenes and man-made objects, both indoors and outdoors. A comparison with previously reported methods based on unseen-visible watermarking techniques is also provided.


Watermarking Image-processing Information security Unseen-visible watermarking Ownership authentication 



Authors thank the Instituto Politecnico Nacional (IPN) as well as the Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnologia de Mexico (CONACYT) by the support provided during the realization of this research.


  1. 1.
    AL-Nabhani Y, Jalab HA, Wahid A, Md Noor R (2015) Robust watermarking algorithm for digital images using discrete wavelet and probabilistic neural network. J King Saud Univ Comput Inf Sci 27(4):393–401. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Barker C, Wiatrowski M (2017) The age of Netflix: critical essays on streaming media, digital delivery and instant access. McFarland, Incorporated Publishers, JeffersonGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Barni M, Bartolini F (2004) Applications. In: Watermarking systems engineering: enabling digital assets security and other applications. CRC Press, Boca Raton, pp 23–44Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Barni M, Cox I, Kalker T, Kim HJ (2005) Digital watermarking. zbMATHGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Bas P, Furon T, Cayre F, Doërr G, Mathon B (2016) A quick tour of watermarking techniques. In: Watermarking Security Fundamentals, Secure Design and Attacks, SpringerBriefs in Electrical and Computer Engineering. Springer, Singapore, pp 13–31. doi: CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Cedillo-Hernandez M, Garcia-Ugalde F, Nakano-Miyatake M, Perez-Meana H (2014) Robust hybrid color image watermarking method based on DFT domain and 2D histogram modification. SIViP 8(1):49–63. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Cedillo-Hernandez M, Garcia-Ugalde F, Nakano-Miyatake M, Perez-Meana H (2015) Robust watermarking method in DFT domain for effective management of medical imaging. SIViP 9(5):1163–1178. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Cedillo-Hernandez A, Cedillo-Hernandez M, Garcia-Ugalde F, Nakano-Miyatake M, Perez-Meana H (2016) A visible watermarking with automated location technique for copyright protection of portrait images. IEICE Trans Inf Syst E99.D(6):1541–1552. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Cedillo-Hernandez M, Cedillo-Hernandez A, Garcia-Ugalde F, Nakano-Miyatake M, Perez-Meana H (2017) Digital color images ownership authentication via efficient and robust watermarking in a hybrid domain. Radioeng J 26(2):536–551. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Chang H, Chen HH (2007) Stochastic color interpolation for digital cameras. IEEE Trans Circ Syst Video Technol 17(8):964–973. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Chareyron G, Da Rugna J, Trémeau A (2010) Color in image watermarking. In: Advanced techniques in multimedia watermarking: image, video and audio applications (Advances in Multimedia and Interactive Technologies), by Ali Mohammad Al-Haj, Information Science Reference; 1st edn. IGI Global, Hershey, pp 36–56CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Chrysochos E, Fotopoulos V, Xenos M, Skodras AN (2014) Hybrid watermarking based on chaos and histogram modification. SIViP 8(5):843–857. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Chuang SC, Huang CH, Wu JL (2007) Unseen visible watermarking. IEEE international conference on image processing. San Antonio, Texas. pp 261–264.
  14. 14.
    Cox I, Miller M, Bloom J (2002) Applications and properties. In: Digital watermarking. The Morgan Kaufmann Series in Multimedia Information and Systems, 1st edn. Morgan Kaufmann Publishers, Burlington, pp 11–39Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Dang-Nguyen D-T, Pasquini C, Conotter V, Boato G (2015) RAISE – a raw images dataset for digital image forensics. ACM Multimedia Systems, Portland, pp 219–224. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Dong P, Brankov JG, Galatsanos NP, Yang Y, Davoine F (2005) Digital watermarking robust to geometric distortions. IEEE Trans Image Process 14(12):2140–2150. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Garcia-Ugalde F, Cedillo-Hernandez M, Morales-Delgado E, Psenicka B (2012) Robust encoded spread spectrum image watermarking in contourlet domain. Signal Processing and Communication Systems (ICSPCS), 2012 6th International conference on, Gold Coast, QLD, Australia.
  18. 18.
    Huang J, Shi YQ (1998) Adaptive image watermarking scheme based on visual masking. Electron Lett 34(8):748–750. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Huang CH, Chuang SC, Huang YL, Wu JL (2009) Unseen visible watermarking: a novel methodology for auxiliary information delivery via visual contents. IEEE Trans Inf For Secur 4(2):193–206. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Juarez-Sandoval O, Fragoso-Navarro E, Cedillo-Hernandez M, Nakano M, Perez-Meana H, Cedillo-Hernandez A (2017) Improved unseen-visible watermarking for copyrigth protection of digital image. 5th international workshop on biometrics and forensics, Coventry. pp 1–5.
  21. 21.
    Langelaar GC, Setyawan I, Lagendijk RL (2000) Watermarking digital image and video data: a state-of-the-art overview. IEEE Signal Process Mag 17(5):20–46. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    Lee ML, Ting PY, Wu TS (2016) Multimed Tools Appl 75:16173. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. 23.
    Lin PY (2014) Imperceptible visible watermarking based on postcamera histogram operation. J Syst Softw 95:194–208. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. 24.
    Lin YH, Wu JL (2012) Unseen visible watermarking for color plus depth map 3D images. IEEE international conference on acoustics, speech and signal processing, Kyoto. pp 1801–1804.
  25. 25.
    Mousavi SM, Naghsh A, Abu-Bakar SAR (2014) Watermarking techniques used in medical images: a survey. J Digit Imaging 27:714–729. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. 26.
    Nematollahi MA, Vorakulpipat C, Rosales HG (2017) Image watermarking. In: Digital watermarking techniques and trends, (Springer Topics in Signal Processing). Springer, Singapore, pp 57–66. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. 27.
    Pei SC, Wang YY (2014) A new 3D unseen visible watermarking and its applications to multimedia. IEEE 3rd global conference on consumer electronics, Tokyo, pp 140–143.
  28. 28.
    Pei SC, Wang YY (2015) Auxiliary metadata delivery in view synthesis using depth no synthesis error model. IEEE Trans Multimed 17(1):128–133. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. 29.
    Pei-Yu L, Yi-Hui C, Chin-Chen C, Jung-San L (2013) Contrast-Adaptive Removable Visible Watermarking (CARVW) mechanism. Image Vis Comput 31(4):311–321. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. 30.
    Pham VQ, Miyaki T, Yamasaki T, Aizawa K (2008) Robust object-based watermarking using feature matching. IEICE Trans Inf Syst E91-D(7):2027–2034. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. 31.
    Sahoo A (2009) Fuzzy weighted adaptive linear filter for color image restoration using morphological detectors. Int J Comput Sci Eng 1(3):217–221 Google Scholar
  32. 32.
    Santoyo-Garcia H, Fragoso-Navarro E, Reyes-Reyes R, Cruz-Ramos C, Nakano-Miyatake M (2017) Visible watermarking technique based on human visual system for single sensor digital cameras. Secur Commun Netw 2017(7903198):1–18. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. 33.
    Schaefer G, Stich M (2004) UCID: an uncompressed color image database. Proc SPIE - Int Soc Optical Eng 5307:472–480. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. 34.
    Solachidis V, Pitas I (2001) Circularly symmetric watermark embedding in 2-D DFT domain. IEEE Trans Image Process 10(11):1741–1753. CrossRefzbMATHGoogle Scholar
  35. 35.
    Tao H, Chongmin L, Zain JM, Abdalla AN (2014) Robust image watermarking theories and techniques: a review. J Appl Res Technol 12(1):122–138. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. 36.
    USC Viterbi School of Engineering (2017) USC-SIPI image database. Accessed 1 Aug 2017
  37. 37.
    Wang Z, Bovik AC, Sheikh HR, Simoncelli EP (2004) Image quality assessment: from error measurement to structural similarity. IEEE Trans Image Process 13(4):600–612. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. 38.
    Xiaolin J, Yanli Q, Liping S, Xiaobo J (2011) An anti-geometric digital watermark algorithm based on histogram grouping and fault-tolerance channel. Intell Sci Intell Data Eng Lecture Notes Comput Sci 7202:753–760. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. 39.
    Yu T, Jing J (2008) New technology of infrared image contrast enhancement based on human visual properties. Infrared Laser Eng 6(37):951–954 Google Scholar
  40. 40.
    Yu P, Shang Y, Li C (2013) A new visible watermarking technique applied to CMOS image sensor. SPIE Proc 8917.

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Instituto Politecnico Nacional SEPI ESIME CulhuacanCiudad de MexicoMexico

Personalised recommendations