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Digital Watermarking Alliance Announces Winner of Best Paper Award


DWA Recognizes Excellence in the field of Digital Watermarking at the IS&T/SPIE Conference

San Jose, Calif. — January 21, 2010 — The Digital Watermarking Alliance (DWA), the international alliance of industry leading organizations delivering valuable digital watermarking solutions, today announced that earlier this week at the IS&T/SPIE International Conference on Media Forensics and Security XII, it has granted awards to three teams of researchers for their papers that demonstrate originality, creativity, clarity and potential impact on the field of watermarking. The 2009 Best Paper awards were presented by Prof. Nasir Memon, one of the conference chairs.

“The efforts of the research community have contributed to the development of a wide range of successful commercial applications of digital watermarking technology,” said Graham Oakes, Chairman of the DWA. “These innovations address real challenges and power valuable applications for a variety of industries. We applaud the advancements made possible by these researchers.”

The first place award was granted to Andrew D. Ker, from the Oxford University Computing Laboratory and Tomas Filler and Jessica Fridrich, from the Dept. of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Binghamton University, New York. The first-place winning team received a cash prize of $1,500, and their paper will be publicized in this year’s proceedings of the conference.

The paper, entitled “The square root law of steganographic capacity for Markov covers,” shows that the maximal payload that can be securely hidden in practice in digital media is proportional to the square root of the number of pixels in the media. This result was established from the basic assumption that no matter how strenuous the effort, all steganographic (data hiding) techniques will be detectable because natural images cannot be modeled well using statistical concepts.

”This paper is a result of a true international collaboration, and we are thrilled it’s received this honor from the DWA,” said Jessica Fridrich. “Andrew Ker originated the idea and Tomas Filler worked independently to work out the technicalities of proving this important theorem and did a phenomenal job.”

The second place award was granted to the team of Pilar Callau, Rony M. Darazi and Benoît Macq from Université catholique de Louvain in Belgium, which authored a paper entitled, “Exhibition QIM-based watermarking for digital cinema.” Third place honors went to the team of Maha M. El Choubassi and Pierre Moulin from the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign for their paper entitled, “Joint detection-estimation games for sensitivity analysis attacks.” The teams received $1,000 and $500 cash awards, respectively.

In order to be nominated for the award, the chair of each watermarking session at SPIE’09’s Media Forensics and Security XI conference was requested to nominate excellent papers from his/her session. Ten excellent papers were nominated for these prizes. The Best Paper Selection Committee then reviewed these papers, from which they selected the winners. The Selection Committee consisted of Prof. Nasir Memon, Polytechnic Institute of NYU; Prof. Edward Delp, Purdue University; and Dr. Adnan Alattar, Chairman, Digimarc Corporation.

The DWA will sponsor the DWA Best Paper Award again in 2010. Nominations for this award will take place during this year’s 2010 Media Forensics and Security XII conference.

About Digital Watermarking
The Digital Watermarking Alliance (DWA) is an international alliance of industry leading companies that deliver valuable digital watermarking technology and solutions to a broad range of customers and markets around the world. Member companies include aquaMobile, Civolution, Digimarc, ISAN, MarkAny, MSI, Université catholique de Louvain, Verance, Verimatrix, and Widevine. For more information, please visit


 digital watermarking
 IS&T/SPIE Conference
 Graham Oakes

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