An overview of scalar quantization based data hiding methods

Husrev T. Sencar, Mahalingam Ramkumar, Ali N. Akansu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


In Ref. [Costa, Writing on dirty paper, IEEE Trans. Inform. Theory 29 (1983) 439-441.], Costa presented a communications framework that provided useful insights into the study of data hiding. We present an alternate and equivalent framework with a more direct data hiding perspective. The difference between the two frameworks is in how channel dependent nature is reflected in optimal encoding and decoding operations. The connection between the suggested encoding/decoding scheme and practical embedding/detection techniques is examined. We analyze quantization based embedding/detection techniques in terms of the proposed framework based on three key aspects. The first aspect is the type of postprocessing utilized at the embedder (i.e. distortion compensation [Chen, Wornell, Preprocessed and postprocessed quantization index modulation methods for digital watermarking, in: Proceedings of SPIE: Security and Watermarking of Multimedia Contents II, vol. 3971, 2000, pp. 48-59; Eggers, Su, Girod, A blind watermarking scheme based on structured codebooks, IEE Colloq. Secure Images Image Authentication 4 (2001) 1-6.], thresholding [Ramkumar, Akansu, Self-noise suppression schemes for blind image steganography, in: Proceedings of SPIE International Workshop on Voice, Video and Data Communication, Multimedia Applications, vol. 3845, 1999.], Gaussian mapping [Perez-Gonzalez, Balado, Hernandez Martin, Performance analysis of existing and new methods for data hiding with known-host information in additive channels, IEEE Trans. Signal Process. 51(4) (2003) 960-980].). The second key aspect is the form of demodulation used at the extractor. The third is the criteria used to optimize the embedding/detection parameters. The embedding/detection techniques are compared in terms of probability of error, correlation, and mutual information (hiding rate) performance merits.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)893-914
Number of pages22
JournalSignal Processing
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2006

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Software
  • Signal Processing
  • Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


  • Data hiding
  • Distortion compensation
  • Embedder/detector
  • Gaussian mapping
  • Postprocessing
  • Quantization
  • Thresholding


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