Everywhere around us, there are warnings about the Internet not being a safe place. Although we all love using it and it has become a part of our everyday life.
No matter what you upload online, whether it is a video, a picture, a document etc. you should always be aware of the fact that it is never 100% secure. However, you can do your best and try to prevent your content from being accessible to unauthorized parties and illegally downloaded.
In this blog, we are going to explain why securing your videos is extremely important and mention some of the ways of security for your online content.
The Importance of Online Video Security
Imagine having a very unique business idea that you want to share with your clients or colleagues and then someone else just steals your idea and takes credit for that? That would be pretty devastating, especially if you put a lot of hard work into it. This situation is very likely to happen if you share the video presenting your idea online without protecting it.
For example, online tutors often have struggled with this. They upload and stream a video of their online course, an unauthorized person downloads the video and then uploads it on some other platform where people can watch it for free. In a short amount of time, the teacher will probably lose his students who want to pay for the course.
If you are using a streaming platform to share some classified content, you definitely do not want any intruders there. Only invited people are supposed to be able to watch your video, but that might not always be the case.
Ways to Secure Your Online Videos
Even though you might protect your videos from unauthorized download, you can never be sure that some of your viewers are not screen capturing your stream. Since you cannot prevent screen capturing, the best thing you can do in this situation is to put a watermark on your video.
Watermark is a unique image or text identifying the rightful owner of a video. It could be your name, company name, company logo, email address etc. This way, even if someone does record and upload your video without permission, all rights and credits will go to you. Make sure you put it in the right size and right position in the video, otherwise they might be able to cut the watermark out.
Video Encryption works by encoding a file, which basically means the file becomes masked, messed up, scrambled… The file itself is then useless since it doesn’t show the real content. The only way to watch an encrypted video is by decoding it with a special key. The broadcaster is the owner of that key and he is able to share it with others. Of course, he will only share the key with invited parties, which makes them able to decode the video and watch it.
Types of Video Encryption
- Personal encryption - used for personal privacy. In this case, you select people who you want to watch the video and everyone else is blocked out.
- DRM - stands for Digital Rights Management automatically blocks a certain category of users temporarily or permanently. For example, it can block out people from a certain region, continent, device, operative system, or it could require a paid license for access.
HLS Video Encryption
What is HLS?
HLS stands for HTTP Live Streaming and it is the most recent solution Publitio offers you. It is an adaptive bitrate streaming protocol which works by separating the original video into different versions with different resolutions. Each version gets cut into a bunch of short video files. Adaptive bitrate streaming allows the video player to automatically choose the resolution of a video according to the viewer's internet speed and connection. Due to short media segment files, it can easily switch from one quality to another while you watch the broadcast.
HLS Video Encryption is one of the best ways to secure your videos if you are using HLS for online content delivery. It adds an extra level of protection to your videos and prepares them for proper online streaming. The encryption works as a DRM solution by exchanging and checking encryption keys and algorithms. The algorithm that HLS supports is called AES-128. The encryption process happens during transcoding and video is encrypted with a special key. Encryption makes the video content coded, so only viewers with a key can decode the video and watch it properly. The broadcaster is exchanging the keys before the video is streamed. This way, you will make it very difficult for uninvited people to watch, download or screen capture your video.
Enable HLS video encryption with Publitio
HLS Encryption is available with Hacker and Pro plans. The encryption process is being done automatically by Publitio. All you need to do is upload a video and click “Enable HLS video encryption” and your content will be a lot safer!
AES stands for Advanced Encryption Standard and it is a specification for encrypting electronic data. There are three different key lengths, 128, 198 and 256 bits, each with a block size of 128 bits.
Sample AES is also a method of encryption, but it might not provide the best level of protection. AES-128 is the most common algorithm used for HLS encryption. It uses the same key for encryption and decryption, so the owner needs to share the key used for encryption with invited viewers.
The best way to protect your decryption key is by using authentication cookies, which means that the player sends a request to the key, so the broadcaster can decide whether or not the user is invited. You can also hide the URL to the key, but this is not the safe method, since the URL can easily be leaked.
How to Secure Your Videos with Publitio?
If you use the Publitio Starter, Developer or Hacker plan, you have a limited number of watermarks (1, 5 and 10), while Pro plan gives you no limits when it comes to watermarks.
You need to open your Publitio Dashboard and you will see the section called “Watermark”. When you open it, you need to click on “Create Watermark” in the top right corner. Then, you upload a watermark of your choice, name it, choose the position and padding. Want to learn more about Publitio video management? Then visit our page Video Management Solution.
As mentioned above, one of the best ways to secure videos published online is to use HLS streaming protocol. If you are Publitio customer, then you have nothing to worry about, just enable HLS video encryption for the video of your choice.
Let us know your thoughts in the comment section what is your best way to protect video assets.