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NHK Cracks Down on Downloaders

Welcome to the NHK?

NHK, one of Japan’s larger TV networks, seem determined to stop unauthorised online distribution of their broadcasting, and to this end have announced digital fingerprinting technology intended to thoroughly curb the practice, though it seems it will be limited to their upcoming download service.

The technology is a refined digital fingerprinting/watermarking technique intended to circumvent the cracking of current generation fingerprints – the watermark allows them to track down the person who redistributed the content and take some sort of action against them. How long it will take to crack is anyone’s guess.

They claim a 99.9999% detection rate, which certainly sounds like a made up statistic, though presumably they have confidence in the technology. Since it is for use on digital downloads, there shouldn’t be any effect on normal broadcasts for now.

It remains to be seen whether this will have any impact on online distribution (whether casual YouTube usage or P2P raw distribution); they will have trouble giving away much of their content, but then again the technology may spread to better networks, and they will want to be moving towards an online distribution model… Via Cnet Japan.

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