Delivering Screeners with Utmost Security
PFT Blog Team | 30 Apr 2018

Delivering Screeners with Utmost Security
Delivering Screeners with Utmost Security Click To Tweet

By Animesh Swain, Product Manager, Product Line Management

Executives from the Media & Entertainment (M&E) industry may be familiar with the following sample scenarios:

 

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For any of these scenarios, video assets have to leave the secure premises of the studio or TV network in order to achieve business goals. Typically, these assets are sent out via DVDs, hard drives or online platforms like WeTransfer and YouTube.

Packing and shipping DVDs or hard drives includes a lot of logistical hassles. The challenges are compounded if these media are encrypted, as the content can then only be played back using a special hardware. In such cases, the sender has to first make sure that the recipient receives the hardware, and that he/she knows how to operate it. What’s more, complexities of availability, maintenance and repair of hardware arise, especially when transfers take place across multiple geographies. The process of accessing such content is equally tedious for the recipients, particularly if they work with many studios who send different hardware.

Sending content through online platforms like WeTransfer, Vimeo and YouTube is definitely simpler, but this poses some serious security concerns. Typically, these platforms involve the use of public links and single passwords that can be shared, or private links with little viewer traceability. Overall, the sender has extremely limited visibility & control over links, passwords and sharing rights across stakeholders. Piracy therefore remains a constant threat, and video assets often end up being uploaded illegally to file sharing sites. The label “DVDSCR” on several torrent sites indicates an illegal copy of a video asset that was meant to go as a screener publish.

Secure Content Operations on Cloud

All the above challenges can be addressed by a secure, Cloud-based solution for centralized content management. With centralization in place, tightening security controls around assets can be much more effective. The solution’s robust security features can ensure that only a handful of authorized people have access to content on the central server. Encryption of assets and essences at rest further safeguards assets, as they become unusable in the event of a security breach. Such a solution allows sharing of content through streaming proxies, wherein the original high res. content never leaves the central server, and the publisher has maximum control over security at all times. Each recipient is sent his/her own multi-factor authentication protected login to view files on a secure platform. This eliminates the need for the same link or the same password to be shared amongst different people. On successful login, the recipient sees a stream with his/her own name watermarked with a time stamp to deter unauthorized sharing. ‘Just-in-time’ access further ensures that recipients get access to content only for a fixed duration of time as specified by the publisher. Moreover, the solution’s intelligent tracking capabilities let the sender know who viewed their content and when.

This multi-layered approach to security acts as a major deterrent for piracy. Even in the unlikely event that a pirate goes to the extent of removing all visible watermarks, forensic watermarks on the video will ensure that the exact source of the breach can be pinpointed. Forensic watermarks are extremely difficult to detect and remove by unauthorized users. They enable law enforcement agencies to track down the guilty even in cases where third party software applications are involved or where hand held devices have been used for unauthorized recording.

Balancing Security with a Seamless User Experience

This multi-layered approach to security acts as a major deterrent for piracy. Even in the unlikely event that a pirate goes to the extent of removing all visible watermarks, forensic watermarks on the video will ensure that the exact source of the breach can be pinpointed. Forensic watermarks are extremely difficult to detect and remove by unauthorized users. They enable law enforcement agencies to track down the guilty even in cases where third party software applications are involved or where hand held devices have been used for unauthorized recording.

At a time when piracy and cybercrime are at an all-time high, an innovative and holistic approach to content security is the need of the hour. Content owners need to take multi-pronged precautions while sending content out to multiple stakeholders across the vast supply chain. Centralized content management solutions can provide M&E enterprises maximum control over their assets. Streaming requests for centralized content, coupled with powerful security features like watermarking, encryption, multi-factor authentication, ‘Just in time’ access etc. can significantly decrease the probability of a breach, especially for pre-release content.

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