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steganography full report
Post: #1


We propose a new method for strengthening the security of information through a combination of signal processing, cryptography and steganography. Cryptography provides the security by concealing the contents and steganography provides security by concealing existence of information being communicated. Signal processing adds additional security by compressing and transforming the information. The proposed method, viz. Steganography Based Information Protection Method (SBIPM), consists of scanning, coding, encryption, reshaping, cover processing and embedding steps.
We then turn to data-hiding in images. Steganography in images has truly come of age with the invention of fast, powerful computers. Software is readily available off the Internet for any user to hide data inside images. These softwares are designed to fight illegal distribution of image documents by stamping some recognisable feature into the image.The most popular technique is Least Significant Bit insertion, which we will look at. Also, we look at more complex methods such as masking and filtering, and algorithms and transformations, which offer the most robustness to attack, such as the Patchwork method which exploits the human eye's weakness to luminance variation.
We will take a brief look at steganalysis, the science of detecting hidden messages and destroying them. We conclude by finding that steganography offers great potential for securing of data copyright, and detection of infringers. Soon, through steganography,personal messages,files, all artistic creations, pictures, and songs can be protected from piracy.
Now a days, various modes of communication like LAN, WAN and INTERNET are widely used for communicating information from one place to another around the globe. Such communication networks are open which any one can access easily. They are regularly monitored and an intercepted.
Steganography, from the Greek, means covered, or secret writing, and is a long-practised form of hiding information. Although related to cryptography, they are not the same. Steganography's intent is to hide the existence of the message, while cryptography scrambles a message so that it cannot be understood. More precisely,
'The goal of steganography is to hide messages inside other harmless messages in a way that does not allow any enemy to even detect that there is a second secret message present."
Steganography includes a vast array of techniques for hiding messages in a variety of media. Among these methods are invisible inks, microdots, digital signatures, covert channels and spread-spectrum communications. A message is embedded in a cover media in an invisible manner so that one could not suspect about its existence.
In this paper we present a substitution based information protection method where we combine cryptographic, steganographic and signal processing concepts together for achieving security. The method is known as Steganography Based Information Protection method. In this method we substitute the information bit in randomly selected pixels at random places within LSB region.
Steganography is the art and science of communicating in a way which hides the the existence of the secret message communication. It aims to hide information /covered writing. Information to be protected is hidden in another data known as cover or carrier. Data containing hidden message are called as Steganos or Stegos. Steganos look like cover data and it is difficult to differentiate between them. Steganography based communication over easily accessible platforms to prevent leakage of information.
2.1 Kerck Off Principle:
In cryptography, this principle states that "the security of the system has to be based on the assumption that the enemy has full knowledge of the design and implementation details of the steganographic system". The only missing information for the enemy is a short, easily exchangeable random number sequence, the secret key.
According to modification in covers, the methods can be categorized as
Transform domain
Spread spectrum
Cover generation
3.1 Substitution Method:
It is commonly used simple method in which we can put information bits in LSB sequentially at fixed place, randomly at fixed place or randomly at random places in cover pixels. The message to be protected passes through scanning, coding, encryption process to form an embedded message.
Scanning, coding, encryption steps make the information unintelligible so that one cannot extract plain message.
Embedding make the message invisible so that one cannot detect it.
Reshaping spreads the message so that embedded message can be detected from distorted steganos by authorized receivers.
Cover processing makes detection of embedded message more difficult since the distortion is either due to noise addition or due to message embedding .
This would increases the robustness and security. Many attacks on such steganographic systems are suggested. Some attacks that can be applied are given below:
Stego-Only Attack
Message-Stego Attack
Cover-Stego Attack
Message-Cover-Stego Attack
3.2 Proposed Method:
The framework of proposed Steganography Based Information Protection method is shown in Fig 1. Its description is presented in the following steps. FRAME WORK OF SBIPM

' *
3.3 Visual Perception:
For any steganography based secure system, the perception of steganos should be as cover image itself so that one cannot differentiate them and detect the existence of embedded message.
3.4 Difference Analysis:
The "difference-images"obtained by taking the difference between cover, processed cover and stego images are not visible. For making the difference visible in "difference-images" for visual interpretation, we first increase differences by multiplication of weight factor and then revert the values to get the strengthened
"difference-images".From analysis of these "difference-images ", on could not say that the changes are either due to cover processing or message embedding and hence we can say that the method is safe from known cover-stego attack.
3.5 Distortion Analysis:
Distortion analysis of stego images is carried out by studying distortion / similarity messages statistically. There are many methods for measuring distortion that can be used for distortion analysis. Distortion between two different images is measured by considering Mean Square Error (MSE), Mean Absolute Error (MAE) or Histogram Similarity (HS).
3.6 Depth Vs Distortion Analysis:
Distortion occurred in different steganos is required by varying the depth of hiding for embedding information in cover image. The relation between depth of hiding used and distortion occurred in the stego images is shown in Fig. that depth of hiding within some LSB region is most suitable for message embedding as the distortion is very small in this region. As the depth of hiding increases beyond preferable region, the distortion becomes noticeable and unsuitable for message hiding.
3.7 Steganography in Images:
In this section we deal with data encoding in still digital images. In essence, image steganography is about exploiting the limited powers of the human visual system (HVS). Within reason, any plain text, cipher text, other images, or anything that can be embedded in a bit stream can be hidden in an image. When embedding data, it is important to remember the following restrictions and features:
The cover data should not be significantly degraded by the embedded data, and
the embedded data should be as imperceptible as possible. (This does not mean the
embedded data needs to be invisible; it is possible for the data to be hidden while it
remains in plain sight.)
The embedded data should be directly encoded into the media, rather than into a
header or wrapper, to maintain data consistency across formats.
The embedded data should be as immune as possible to modifications from
intelligent attacks or anticipated manipulations such as filtering and resampling.
Some distortion or degradation of the embedded data can be expected when the cover
data is modified. To minimise this, error correcting codes should be used.
The embedded data should be self-clocking or arbitrarily re-entrant. This ensures
that the embedded data can still be extracted when only portions of the cover data is
available. For example, if only a part of image is available, the embedded data should
still be recoverable.
Information to be

Law enforcemed intercept but doe! know that document.
Hidden document
Sitego tool J

Stego tool
User can get the hidden information using password
4.1 Images:
To a computer, an image is an array of numbers that represent light intensities at various points, or pixels. These pixels make up the image's raster data. An image size of 640 by 480 pixels, utilizing 256 colors (8 bits per pixel) is fairly common. Such an image would contain around 300 kilobits of data.
Digital images are typically stored in either 24-bit or 8-bit per pixel fdes. 24-bit images are sometimes known as true colour images. Obviously, a 24-bit image provides more space for hiding information; however, 24-bit images are generally large
and not that common. A 24-bit image 1024 pixels wide by 768 pixels high would have a size in excess of 2 megabytes. As such, large files would attract attention were they to be transmitted across a network or the Internet. Image compression is desirable. However, compression brings with it other problems, that shall be explained shortly.
Alternatively, 8-bit colour images can be used to hide information. In 8-bit colour images, (such as GIF files), each pixel is represented as a single byte. Each pixel merely points to a colour index table, or palette, with 256 possible colours. The pixel's value, then, is between 0 and 255. The image software merely needs to paint the indicated colour on the screen at the selected pixel position.
If using an 8-bit image as the cover-image, many steganography experts recommend using images featuring 256 shades of gray as the palette, for reasons that will become apparent. Grey-scale images are preferred because the shades change very gradually between palette entries. This increases the image's ability to hide information.
When dealing with 8-bit images, the steganographer will need to consider the image as well as the palette. Obviously, an image with large areas of solid color is a poor choice, as variances created by embedded data might be noticeable. Once a suitable cover image has been selected, an image encoding technique needs to be chosen.
4.2 Image Compression:
Image compression offers a solution to large image files. Two kinds of image compression are lossless and lossy compression. Both methods save storage space but have differing effects on any uncompressed hidden data in the image.
Lossy compression, as typified by JPEG (Joint Photographic Experts Group) format files, offers high compression, but may not maintain the original image's integrity. This can impact negatively on any hidden data in the image. This is due to the lossy compression algorithm, which may "lose" unnecessary image data, providing a close approximation to high-quality digital images, but not an exact duplicate. Hence, the term" Tossy" compression. Lossy compression is frequently used on true-colour images, as it offers high compression rates.
Lossless compression maintains the original image data exactly; hence it is preferred when the original information must remain intact. It is thus more favoured
by steganographic techniques. Unfortunately, lossless compression does not offer such high compression rates as lossy compression. Typical examples of lossless compression formats are Compuserve's GIF (Graphics Interchange Format) and Microsoft's BMP (Bitmap) format.
4.3 Image Encoding Techniques:
Information can be hidden many different ways in images. Straight message insertion can be done, which will simply encode every bit of information in the image. More complex encoding can be done to embed the message only in "noisy" areas of the image that will attract less attention. The message may also be scattered randomly throughout the cover image.The most common approaches to information hiding in images are:
Least significant bit (LSB) insertion > Masking and filtering techniques
Algorithms and transformations
Each of these can be applied to various images, with varying degrees of success. Each of them suffers to varying degrees from operations performed on images, such as cropping, or resolution decrementing, or decreases in the colour depth.
4.4 Least Significant Bit Insertion:
One of the most common techniques used in steganography today is called least significant bit (LSB) insertion. This method is exactly what it sounds like; the least significant bits of the cover-image are altered so that they form the embedded information. The following example shows how the letter A can be hidden in the first eight bytes of three pixels in a 24-bit image.
Pixels: (00100111 11101001 11001000)
(00100111 11001000 11101001) (11001000 00100111 11101001)
A: 10000001
Result: (00100111 11101000 11001000)
(00100110 11001000 11101000) (11001000 00100111 11101001)
The three underlined bits are the only three bits that were actually altered. LSB insertion requires on average that only half the bits in an image be changed. Since the 8-bit letter A only requires eight bytes to hide it in, the ninth byte of the three pixels can be used to hide the next character of the hidden message.
A slight variation of this technique allows for embedding the message in two or more of the least significant bits per byte. This increases the hidden information capacity of the cover-object, but the cover-object degrades more statistically, and it is more detectable. Other variations on this technique include ensuring that statistical changes in the image do not occur. Some intelligent software also checks for areas that are made up of one solid color. Changes in these pixels are then avoided because slight changes would cause noticeable variations in the area.
4.5 Advantages Of LSB Insertion:
Major advantage of the LSB algorithm is it is quick and easy. There has also been steganography software developed which work around LSB color alterations via palette manipulation.
LSB insertion also works well with gray-scale images. A slight variation of this technique allows for embedding the message in two or more of the least significant bits per byte. This increases the hidden information capacity.
4.6 Masking And Filtering :
Masking and filtering techniques hide information by marking an image in a manner similar to paper watermarks. Because watermarking techniques are more integrated into the image, they may be applied without fear of image destruction from lossy compression. By covering, or masking a faint but perceptible signal with another to make the first non-perceptible, we exploit the fact that the human visual system cannot detect slight changes in certain temporal domains of the image.
Technically, watermarking is not a steganographic form. Strictly, steganography conceals data in the image; watermarking extends the image information and becomes an attribute of the cover image, providing license, ownership or copyright details.
Masking techniques are more suitable for use in lossy JPEG images than LSB insertion because of their relative immunity to image operations such as compression and cropping.
5. Algorithms and transformations
Because they are high quality colour images with good compression, it is desirable to use JPEG images across networks such as the Internet. Indeed, JPEG images are becoming abundant on the Internet.
JPEG images use the discrete cosine transform (DCT) to achieve compression. DCT is a lossy compression transform, because the cosine values cannot be calculated precisely, and rounding errors may be introduced. Variances between the original data and the recovered data depends on the values and methods used the calculate the DCT.
Images can also be processed using fast Fourier transformation and wavelet transformation. Other properties such as luminance can also be utilised. The HVS has a very low sensitivity to small changes in luminance, being able to discern changes of no less than one part in thirty for random patterns. This figure goes up to one part in 240 for uniform regions of an image.
Modern steganographic systems use spread-spectrum communications to transmit a narrowband signal over a much larger bandwidth so that the spectral density of the signal in the channel looks like noise.
The two different spread-spectrum techniques these tools employ are called direct-sequence and frequency hopping. The former hides information by phase-modulating the data signal (carrier) with a pseudorandom number sequence that both the sender and the receiver know. The latter divides the available bandwidth into multiple channels and hops between these channels (also triggered by a pseudorandom number sequence).
The Patchwork method is based on a pseudorandom, statistical process that takes advantage of the human weaknesses to luminance variation. Using redundant pattern encoding to repeatedly scatter hidden information throughout the cover image, like a patchwork, Patchwork can hide a reasonably small message many times in a image. In the Patchwork method, n pairs of image points (a,b) are randomly chosen. The brightness of a is decreased by one and the brightness of b is increased by one. For a
labeled image, the expected value of the sum of the differences of the n pairs of points is then 2n. Bender shows that after JPEG compression, with the quality factor set to 75, the message can still be decoded with an 85 .
This algorithm is more robust to image processing such as cropping and rotating, but at the cost of message size. Techniques such as Patchwork are ideal for watermarking of images. Even if the image is cropped, there is a good probability that the watermark will still be readable.
Other techniques encrypt and scatter the hidden throughout the image in some pre-determined manner. It is assumed that even if the message bits are extracted, they will be useless without the algorithm and stego-key to decode them. Although such techniques do help protect against hidden message extraction, they are not immune to destruction of the hidden message through image manipulation.
These are the steps followed in image hiding while transmission and de noising after receiving:
1. Get a cover image (publicly accessible material)
2. Take the information to be hidden (message or image)
3. Combine cover image with the information to be hidden(we follow LSB algorithm for this)
4. While transmission it will be corrupted by noise
5. Use any of the fdtering methods, ex: wiener filtering for de noising in wavelet domain
6. Here fdter is employed in order to remove the noise
7. During extraction a password check is provided
8. If password is matched then extraction of hidden information.
A method, SBIPM, for providing the security of our important information is based on the techniques of signal processing, cryptography, and steganography. The security of information has been strengthened by applying scanning, coding, encryption, cover processing and embedding techniques in the method. Reshaping step of the method provides robustness for detecting message correctly in such situation when stego image is distorted. The method developed is safe from various attacks. Simulation and steganalysis results shown in this paper shows that one will not be able to distinguish between cover and stego images.
Thus we conclude that the strength of security achieved is very high and unauthorized receiver will not be able to get back the original message using exhaustive without the knowledge of key parameters.
Digital Steganography is interesting field and growing rapidly for information hiding in the area of information has a vital role in defence as well as civil applications. In future we will more of secure systems based on this technology. Several methods for hiding data in, images were described, with appropriate introductions to the environments of each medium, as well as the strengths and weaknesses of each method.The key algorithm for designing the steganography system has been dealt. Most data-hiding systems take advantage of human perceptual weaknesses, but have weaknesses of their own. We conclude that for now, it seems that no system of data-hiding is totally immune to attack.
However, steganography has its place in security. Though it cannot replace cryptography totally, it is intended to supplement it. Its application in watermarking and fingerprinting, for use in detection of unauthorised, illegally copied material, is continually being realised and developed.
In this report many relevant issues were presented, from a technical point of view. However, little has been done to motivate these studies. A more detailed investigation of applications, and a comparison with current techniques in steganography would have been interesting. For example, a thorough evaluation of the advantages natural language-based techniques can offer over image-based techniques could have offered valuable insights.
An important contribution of this project to natural language steganography is the linguistic sophistication of the model for word-substitution put forward. The lexical models employed in current substitution-based systems were often criticised and their inadequate behavior usually described with respect to language theory. These phenomena could have been demonstrated by example, showing texts and inadequate replacements carried out by current stegosystems. A more detailed analysis of how common these critical situations really are in typical text could have given clues for the construction of such systems, to decide whether the additional complexity introduced by statistical word-sense disambiguation is worth the effort.
Other linguistic models have been studied, in addition to the lexical ones, and put in relation to each other, and to their use for steganographic purposes. The steganographic aspects were then covered by information-theoretic models. However, little has been done to justify this choice. It might have been fruitful to present other characterizations of steganography and to compare their suitability to natural language steganography.
A central part of the problem motivating this report was that there are no models formalizing the design and analysis of natural language stegosystems. Although the present report somewhat improves the situation, by providing a systematic investigation of the topic, there is still no system to build upon for making formal claims about security or robustness in the natural language scenario.
Several methods for hiding data in, images were described, with appropriate introductions to the environments of each medium, as well as the strengths and weaknesses of each method.The key algorithm for designing the steganography system has been dealt. Most data-hiding systems take advantage of human perceptual weaknesses, but have weaknesses of their own. We conclude that for now, it seems that no system of data-hiding is totally immune to attack.
However, steganography has its place in security. Though it cannot replace cryptography totally, it is intended to supplement it. Its application in watermarking and fingerprinting, for use in detection of unauthorised, illegally copied material, is continually being realised and developed.
Also, in places where standard cryptography and encryption is outlawed, steganography can be used for covert data transmission. Steganography can be used along with cryptography to make an highly secure data high way.Formerly just an interest of the military, Steganography is now gaining popularity among the masses. Soon, any computer user will be able to put his own watermark on his artistic creations.
Thus we conclude that the strength of security achieved is very high and unauthorized receiver will not be able to get back the original message using exhaustive without the knowledge of key parameters.
Digital Steganography is interesting field and growing rapidly for information hiding in the area of information has a vital role in defence as well as civil applications.
WWW:Http://wwwjjtcxom/Steganography/steglist.htm, 1995.
Private Site, Hamburg. Germany
2.N.F.Johnson. Steganography.
WWW:http://\ George Mason University
Post: #2
This article is presented by:



Steganography is a process that involves hiding a message in an appropriate carrier
for example an image or an audio file. The carrier can then be sent to a receiver without
anyone else knowing that it contains a hidden message. This is a process, which can be used for example by civil rights organizations in repressive states to communicate their message to the outside world without their own government being aware of it. Less virtuously it can be used by terrorists to communicate with one another without anyone else’s knowledge. In both cases the objective is not to make it difficult to read the message as cryptography does, it is to hide the existence of the message in the first place possibly to protect the courier. Objective is not to prevent the message being read but to hide its existence.

• The word steganography means” covered in hidden writing”. The object of steganography is to send a message through some innocuous carrier(to a receiver while preventing anyone else from knowing that a message is being sent to all. Computer based steganography allows changes to be made to what are known as digital carriers such as images or sounds.
• The changes represent the hidden message, but result if successful in no discernible change to the carrier. The information may be nothing to do with the carrier sound or image or it might be information about the carrier such as the author or a digital watermarking or fingerprint.
• In steganography information can be hidden in carriers such as images, audio files, text files, and video and data transmissions. When message is hidden in the carrier a stego carrier is formed for example a stego-image. Hopefully it will be perceived to be as close as possible to the original carrier or cover image by the human senses.
• Images are the most widespread carrier medium. The are used for steganography in the following way. The message may firstly be encrypted. They are used for steganography in the following way. The message may firstly be encrypted. The sender embeds the secret message to be sent into a graphic file. This results in the production of what is called stego-image. Additional secret data may be needed in the hiding process e.g. a stegokey etc. This stego-image is then transmitted to the recipient.
• The recipient extractor extracts the message from the carrier image. The message can only be extracted if there is a shared secret between the sender and the recipient. This could be the algorithm for extraction or a special parameter such as stegokey. A stegoanalyst or attacker may try to intercept the stego image.
ShyBig GrinUndecided
Post: #3
Steganography that is Hiding information into pictures and other media
Phenomena of Steganography

_ Carrying (or Covering) media
•Which may be picture, video, sound file, radio communication, even the structure of a File system.
• The carry medium ought to look innocent.
_ The hidden information (or the information to hide) called Stego
medium or Stego message.
•Which may be open message, but may be encrypted one as well.
The Basic Types of Steganography
_ Substitutional Steganography
• Some elements of the redundant covering medium are substituted by the elements of the stego medium.
_ Selecting Steganography
• Some elements of the covering medium are selected to carry the hidden information.
• The relevant information is hidden in a narrow-band region of a wide band noise. The hiding (narrow) band is changed by
time to time. (Radio Communication.)
Constructional Steganography
• The Stego message is made similar to the structure of the covering medium.
Some characteristics (1)
_ The most simple hiding methods (like the substitution) cannot tolerate the edition of the covering medium •Compression, picture edition, resizing, printing, copying, etc..
_ On the other hand it should be a basic requirement, that the hidden information ought to survive such changes of the covering medium
The applied method strongly depends on
• The characteristic of the covering medium and
• The goal of the hiding
_ There exist cases when we do not want the message being completely hidden (watermark).
There are some cases when hiding has one common feature with
encryption, for recovering hidden information one needs a KEY.
_ Nowadays Steganography is applied mostly to put copy right information to the media sold (This is known as electronic watermarking.)
Ancient methods for hiding (1)
Aineas Taktikosz :Poliokretika (360 A.D. )
– Every nth letter of a plaintext had to be read, or nth letters of the words.
– Passing through a thread on holes of a pottery disc whose holes are meant different letters agreed in advance.
– Letters on a certain page of a book signed by hardly visible dots. It is applicable for newspapers or letters as
– Cutting the hair of a slave and writing the message to his bald head skin. (Herodotus about 450 A.D.)
Ancient methods for hiding (2)
_ Naturally our ancestors applied secret writings as well. They used both substitution and permutation of letters and other codes for light signals.
Hiding methods in WW 2
_ In WW2 the hardly visible dots still were used to denote the selected letters in a newspaper, for example.
_ Many soldiers tried to send home hidden messages that way, but the method was well known by the censors. (If they cannot
discover the hiding method, they mixed the words at least or put the stamp in an other position, etc.)
_ The encrypton of messages, however,acquired more and more importance.
History of securing information
_ In ancient times hiding was preferred rather then encryption.
_ Since the middle centuries encryption (vs. Decryption) play
more and more important role.
_ Nowadays cryptographic methods are preferred more then hiding (when securing messages).
Goals of hiding nowadays
_ Hiding Copy-right into media.
_ Identifying message in a hidden way
• Identifying the sender or owner
• Identifying the individual addressee
• Hiding commercial information
_ In common name:
electronic watermarking
Post: #4
Presented By:
Aryasindhu Sahu

Historical Facts
Ancient Greeks used wax on wood
World War 2 – use of Invisible Inks
Old Paintings – symbols and signs
Modern Steganography
Text Injection
File Embedding
Digital Watermarking
Copyright Marking
Data Encryption
LSB Editing
Hiding Several Messages:
Deniable Cryptography
Knowledge of encrypted data
No proof how much information is stored
Texts or Web Pages
Modern use of Steganography
In modern printers
Digital Images
Email Encryption
Document Password Protection
Website Security
Digital Watermarking
SAFDB (Steganography Application Fingerprint Database)
Detection Of Steganography
Look for (disturbing of) patterns
Odd use of language
Line heights and whitespaces
Detection Of Steganography
Examine color palette
Size of the image
− Format
− Last modified date
Statistical analysis
Analyze frequency of DCT (discrete cosine transform) coefficients
Entropy of redundant data
− Hidden content higher entropy
Apply filters to steganograms
Visible representation of statistical data
Detection Of Steganography
Statistical analysis
Analyze patterns in background noise
Measure inaudible frequencies
Detection Of Steganography
Look for distinguishing movements
Same techniques as with images
Same techniques as with audio
Defeating Steganography
● Change spacing
● Modify line heights, layout
● Add or remove words
Comparison of Secret Communication Technique
Terrorism & Steganography
Terror groups hide behind web encryption.
Uncrackable encryption is allowing terrorism.
Seamless Security
Hide data practically everywhere
Hidden Watermarking
Data Stealing reduced
Detection of Steganography
− Possible, but can be difficult
Defeating Steganography is not hard
Post: #5

The relations between individuals, social groups and institutions which constitute societies have to be protected from all sorts of abuse because, as George Orwell once amusingly wrote, “On the whole human beings want to be good, but not too good, and not quite all the time”. Exchange of information is involved in many kinds of societal relations which require protection; hence it is not surprising that cryptography and steganography techniques have emerged a long time ago, when societal relations were much less complex, diversified, technology-mediated and information-intensive. Think of steganography as meta-encryption: While encryption protects messages from being read by unauthorized parties, steganography lets the sender conceal the fact that he has even sent a message.
While cryptography protects messages from being captured by unauthorized parties, steganography techniques enable concealment of the fact that a message is being sent, and, if not detected, make the sender and the receiver “invisible”. Thus steganography potentially provides not only security, but also anonymity and privacy, which become understandable desires in modern societies which force us to take part in increasingly intensive and complex social relations (a somewhat special case of societies in states which incriminate for the usage of encryption).
Obviously, the anonymity potential of steganography, while can be considered as beneficial in the context of protecting privacy, adds new type of threats to individuals, societies and states. The tradeoff between the benefits and threats involves many complex ethical, legal and technological issues.
Steganography is the art and science of writing hidden messages in such a way that no one apart from the intended recipient knows of the existence of the message; this is in contrast to cryptography, where the existence of the message itself is not disguised, but the content is obscured. The advantage of steganography over cryptography alone is that messages do not attract attention to themselves, to messengers, or to recipients.
Steganography comes from the Greek and literally means, "Covered writing". It is one of various data hiding techniques, which aims at transmitting a message on a channel where some other kind of information is already being transmitted. This distinguishes steganography from covert channel techniques, which instead of trying to transmit data between two entities that were unconnected before.
The goal of steganography is to hide messages inside other “harmless” messages in a way that does not allow any “enemy” to even detect that there is a second secret message present. The only missing information for the “enemy” is the short easily exchangeable random number sequence, the secret key, without the secret key, the “enemy” should not have the slightest chance of even becoming suspicious that on an observed communication channel, hidden communication might take place.
Steganography is closely related to the problem of “hidden channels” n secure operating system design, a term which refers to all communication paths that cannot easily be restricted by access control mechanisms. In an ideal world we would all be able to send openly encrypted mail or files to each other with no fear of reprisals. However there are often cases when this is possible, either because the working company does not allow encrypted email or the local government does not approve of encrypt communication (a reality in some parts of the world). This is where steganography can come into play.
When one considers that messages could be encrypted steganographically in e-mail messages, particularly e-mail spam, the notion of junk e-mail takes on a whole new light. Coupled with the "chaffing and winnowing" technique, a sender could get messages out and cover their tracks all at once.
Rumors about terrorists using steganography started first in the daily newspaper USA Today on February 5, 2001 in two articles titled "Terrorist instructions hidden online" and "Terror groups hide behind Web encryption". In July the same year, an article was titled even more precisely: "Militants wire Web with links to jihad". A citation from the article: "Lately, al-Qaeda operatives have been sending hundreds of encrypted messages that have been hidden in files on digital photographs on the auction site". Other media worldwide cited these rumors many times, especially after the terrorist attack of 9/11.
Moreover, an online "terrorist training manual", the "Technical Mujahid, a Training Manual for Jihadis" contained a section entitled "Covert Communications and Hiding Secrets Inside Images."
By early 2002, a Cranfield University MSc thesis developed the first practical implementation of an online real-time Counter Terrorist Steganography Search Engine. This was designed to detect the most likely image steganography in transit and thereby provide UK Ministry of Defence Intelligence Staff a realistic approach to "narrowing the field", suggesting that interception capacity was never the difficulty but rather prioritising the target media.
Despite this, there are no known instances of terrorists using computer steganography. Al Qaeda's use of steganography is somewhat simpler: In 2008 a British Muslim, Rangzieb Ahmed, was alleged to have a contact book with Al-Qaeda telephone numbers, written in invisible ink. He was convicted of terrorism.
The first recorded uses of steganography can be traced back to 440 BC when Herodotus mentions two examples of steganography in The Histories of Herodotus. Demaratus sent a warning about a forthcoming attack to Greece by writing it directly on the wooden backing of a wax tablet before applying its beeswax surface. Wax tablets were in common use then as reusable writing surfaces, sometimes used for shorthand. Another ancient example is that of Histiaeus, who shaved the head of his most trusted slave and tattooed a message on it. After his hair had grown the message was hidden. The purpose was to instigate a revolt against the Persians.
Some other recorded instances of steganography in history are:-
*Wood Template:-There arerecords of a trick used in China of embedding a code ideogram at a prearranged position in a dispatch; a similar idea led to the grille system used in medieval Europe, where a wooden template would be placed over a seemingly innocuous text, highlighting an embedded secret message.
* Eggs: - This technique was first recorded in 1558 A.D. Italian scientist Giambattista Della Porta discovered how to hide messages inside a hard-boiled egg. Write on the shell using an ink made from the mixture of alum and vinegar. The solution leaves no trace on the surface. The message can be retrieved by removing the shell and reading the egg.
* In WWII, the French Resistance sent some messages written on the backs of couriers using invisible ink.
* Hidden messages on paper written in secret inks, under other messages or on the blank parts of other messages.
* Messages written in Morse code on knitting yarn and then knitted into a piece of clothing worn by a courier.
* Messages written on the back of postage stamps.
* During and after World War II, espionage agents used photographically produced microdots to send information back and forth. Microdots were typically minute, approximately less than the size of the period produced by a typewriter. WWII microdots needed to be embedded in the paper and covered with an adhesive (such as collodion). This was reflective and thus detectable by viewing against glancing light. Alternative techniques included inserting microdots into slits cut into the edge of post cards.
* During World War II, a spy for Japan in New York City, Velva lee Dickinson, sent information to accommodation addresses in neutral South America. She was a dealer in dolls, and her letters discussed how many of this or that doll to ship. The stegotext was the doll orders, while the concealed "plaintext" was itself encoded and gave information about ship movements, etc. Her case became somewhat famous and she became known as the Doll Woman.
* Cold War counter-propaganda. In 1968, crew members of the USS Pueblo (AGER-2) intelligence ship held as prisoners by North Korea, communicated in sign language during staged photo opportunities, informing the United States they were not defectors but rather were being held captive by the North Koreans. In other photos presented to the US, crew members gave "the finger" to the unsuspecting North Koreans, in an attempt to discredit photos that showed them smiling and comfortable.
Any steganographic technique which uses any digital communication media can be collectively termed as digital steganography. Usually digital steganography refers to the use of computers to hide potentially covert information into seemingly innocuous carrier file so that the hidden message is invisible to anyone other than the intended recipient. Use of computers and personalized softwares for steganography has made the process of encoding and decoding steganographic message very easy compared to the old days of physical steganography, where sender had to manually later some physical characteristic of the carrier file to carry the hidden message. These modern day softwares make the creation of a steganographic files as easy as a couple of mouse clicks.
Modern steganography entered the world in 1985 with the advent of the personal computer being applied to classical steganography problems. Development following that was slow, but has since taken off, going by the number of "stego" programs available: Over 800 digital steganography applications have been identified by the Steganography Analysis and Research Center. Digital steganography techniques include:
* Concealing messages within the lowest bits of noisy images or sound files.
* Concealing data within encrypted data or within random data. The data to be concealed is first encrypted before being used to overwrite part of a much larger block of encrypted data or a block of random data (an unbreakable cipher like the one-time pad generates ciphertexts that look perfectly random if you don't have the private key).
* Chaffing and winnowing.
* Mimic functions convert one file to have the statistical profile of another. This can thwart statistical methods that help brute-force attacks identify the right solution in a ciphertext-only attack.
* Concealed messages in tampered executable files, exploiting redundancy in the i386 instruction set.
* Pictures embedded in video material (optionally played at slower or faster speed).
* Injecting imperceptible delays to packets sent over the network from the keyboard. Delays in key presses in some applications (telnet or remote desktop software) can mean a delay in packets, and the delays in the packets can be used to encode data.
* Content-Aware Steganography hides information in the semantics a human user assigns to a datagram. These systems offer security against a non-human adversary/warden. This kind of steganography is actually designed to bypass automated systems which check for any sensitive data. Any human is able to understand the datagrams used, but automated scripts will pass it off as harmless.
* Blog-Steganography. Messages are fractionalized and the (encrypted) pieces are added as comments of orphaned web-logs (or pin boards on social network platforms). In this case the selection of blogs is the symmetric key that sender and recipient are using; the carrier of the hidden message is the whole blogosphere. In the modern world, there are innumerable blogs in the internet. Most of them are not at all worth a second look to anyone not interested in the subject the blog happens to be discussing. These blogs can sometimes have several thousands of comments. The sender may use a variety of different name known to the intended recipient and they are able to communicate in a secure way without anyone else being aware of any malpractice.
Post: #6
Submitted by
Anashwar Prasad

What is Steganography?
Art of hiding information in ways that prevent the detection of the hidden information.
Word derives from Greek, means “covered writing”
Cryptography scrambles messages so that they cannot be understood, but Steganography hides messages so that they cannot be seen.
It includes numerous secret communication methods that conceal the message’s very existence.
Old Techniques
494 BC – Head Tattoo
480 BC – Beeswax tablets
1558 – Eggs
1915 – Invisible Ink
1941 – Microdots
1980s – Watermarking
Modern Times
1990s – Digital Steganography (Image)
2003 – Audio Steganography
2007 – Streaming Video
2008 – Network Steganography
A Steganographic System
Carrier files

A cover used to smuggle secret data
Any type of file can be used
Common files are used to avoid suspicion
Usual carriers are
Image files – very common place
Audio files – medium size, can carry more hidden data
Video files – very large size, huge amounts of data can be carried
Steganography Technique: Least Significant Bit
Messages are encoded in the least significant bit of every byte in an image.
By doing so, the value of each pixel is changed slightly.
But not enough to make significant visual changes to the image, even when compared to the original.
Steganography Technique: Least Significant Bit
Inserting the word “bomb” using LSB techniques:
b = 01100010
o = 01101111
m = 01101101
b = 01100010
Steganography Technique: Least Significant Bit
Detection of LSB Technique
Embedding within Audio File
Network Steganography
Uses communication protocols' control elements and its intrinsic functionality.
Harder to detect and eliminate.
Different types exist
Protocol Steganography
HICCUPS ( Used in WLAN Networks)
Highest Information Density
Difficult to use
Speed of 200 kilobits per second typically
LACK (Lost Audio Packets)
LACK (Lost Audio Packet Steganography)
Lowest Information Density
Hardest to detect
Speed of 160 bits per second typical
IP Headers
Structure of a TCP Header.
Protocol Steganography
Many interesting problems and many choices for solutions
Field is very young, not mature
Commercial applications as well
Companies interested for digital intellectual property rights
Need more rigorous approach for complete solutions
Post: #7
The steganographic techniques available for still images are tested in this article. The visible properties of the images can be modified by embedding large amount of data into it. The RSA and ECC (elliptic curve) based methods are analyzed. Minimization of the embedded information is possible by using the ECC, as the minimal block size is smaller than that of the RSA.
Digital communication is taking up a major role in the life. Lot of internet based communication applications is available and there is need to keep the information secret. The differ rent requirements for the purpose of steganography are: Capacity, imperceptibility and robustness. The steganographic methods embed a secret message in a cover message, a stego-key parameterizing the process. For detecting and reading of the embedded message, the reader must possess this key. Copyright marks or serial numbers are embedded in the digital images, photographs etc today for the extra security. To detect the illegal usage if an image, the steganographic methods can be used. Using 24-bit images each pixel can represent 16,777,216 color values. The lower 2 bits of the image can be used to represent the data. This is known as the least significant bit insertion. No visible degradation also happens and the large amount of information can be stored.

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