Intertrust, Friend MTS extend streaming piracy fight
February 6, 2020
By Colin Mann
DRM technology specialist Intertrust and content protection service provider Friend MTS are extending their partnership agreement that enhances Intertrust’s ExpressPlay content protection platform with Friend MTS anti-piracy and watermarking technology services.
Now, an additional layer of protection is introduced that is complementary to the ExpressPlay content security suite, which features ExpressPlay DRM and ExpressPlay XCA. Intertrust enters this new reseller agreement with Friend MTS with a joint objective to tackle piracy with an anti-piracy platform that provides an end-to-end solution that can shut down an illicit stream by stopping transmission of content from the endpoint where it is being redistributed illegally, or by compiling a forensic evidence package that can be utilised for subsequent legal action.
“Modern content security is essential for safeguarding the revenue of premium live broadcast and streaming services, and the addition of the Friend MTS technology into our cloud-based multi-DRM solutions ensures robust, end-to-end protection against a myriad of piracy and illegal content access issues,” suggests Ali Hodjat, product marketing director for Intertrust Media Solutions. “We see live premium sports as an area of great concern for our customers as the variety of media access technologies evolves. Advanced watermarking and enforcement in live events has the potential to prevent significant revenue loss from illicit restreaming.”
The pair note that piracy is a global issue that affects content rights owners throughout the pay-TV value chain, from major sports events to premium movies and TV shows. According to ABI Research, the number of households viewing illegally distributed content in some regions is as high as 15 per cent, with 9 per cent of North American households accessing such content illegally. Though these figures may seem small, they represent a potential of $7 billion in additional revenue per year that the pay-TV industry could gain by converting just one in four unauthorised users into paid subscribers.
“Prolific growth in piracy is undermining subscriber revenue and cutting into profits, making it essential for content owners, broadcasters and OTT service operators to prioritize anti-theft measures and take decisive action,” said Simon Hanna, Regional Vice President, EMEA, Friend MTS. “The addition of watermarking and anti-piracy services to ExpressPlay, powered by Friend MTS, has the potential to significantly reduce unauthorised content redistribution and access in a matter of just minutes.”
The ExpressPlay anti-piracy solution incorporates Friend MTS content and revenue security functionality, which includes content monitoring and legal enforcement for linear channels, live events and non-live VoD content. The ASiD (Advanced Subscriber ID) watermarking solution supports OTT, IPTV and broadcast platforms, with high performance extraction capable of addressing live events – in particular, live sports programming.
Video watermarking technology is a crucial element of content security systems. User-specific forensic watermarking is a method to identify the source of piracy by pinpointing the last authorised user and device. Session-based forensic watermarking enables the service operator to embed a unique identifier for each user, and therefore to discern the actual device that is ‘leaking’ or re-streaming the content. This process allows for real-time detection of the source of piracy and real-time shutdown of illegal redistribution, or the ability to take other actions subject to service provider policies.
ExpressPlay DRM supports all five major DRM platforms: Apple FairPlay Streaming, Google Widevine, Adobe Access, Microsoft PlayReady and the open-standard Marlin DRM. It is fully compatible with ExpressPlay XCA, which is designed to protect secure broadcast delivery to smart TVs and set-top boxes based on the open-standard Marlin DRM.