Open Access

Lossless Data Embedding—New Paradigm in Digital Watermarking

EURASIP Journal on Advances in Signal Processing20022002:986842

DOI: 10.1155/S1110865702000537

Received: 20 May 2001

Published: 14 February 2002


One common drawback of virtually all current data embedding methods is the fact that the original image is inevitably distorted due to data embedding itself. This distortion typically cannot be removed completely due to quantization, bit-replacement, or truncation at the grayscales 0 and 255. Although the distortion is often quite small and perceptual models are used to minimize its visibility, the distortion may not be acceptable for medical imagery (for legal reasons) or for military images inspected under nonstandard viewing conditions (after enhancement or extreme zoom). In this paper, we introduce a new paradigm for data embedding in images (lossless data embedding) that has the property that the distortion due to embedding can be completely removed from the watermarked image after the embedded data has been extracted. We present lossless embedding methods for the uncompressed formats (BMP, TIFF) and for the JPEG format. We also show how the concept of lossless data embedding can be used as a powerful tool to achieve a variety of nontrivial tasks, including lossless authentication using fragile watermarks, steganalysis of LSB embedding, and distortion-free robust watermarking.


lossless reversible removable erasable invertible watermarking steganography data embedding

Authors’ Affiliations

Center for Intelligent Systems, SUNY Binghamton
Department of Electrical Engineering, SUNY Binghamton


© Fridrich et al. 2002