Novel high-speed reconfigurable FPGA architectures for EMD-based image steganography

  • K. Sathish ShetEmail author
  • A. R. Aswath
  • M. C. Hanumantharaju
  • Xiao-Zhi Gao


Exploiting modification direction (EMD)-based image steganography algorithm has higher embedding efficiency, low distortion, and best security that finds application in secure communication, data protection, access control in digital content distribution, etc., EMD steganography encapsulates secret digit represented in (2n + 1)-ary notational system by increasing or decreasing one of the n cover pixels by one. New high-speed reconfigurable architectures and field programmable gate array (FPGA) implementation of EMD based image steganography algorithms have been proposed. Although, earlier work on FPGA implementation of steganography algorithms offer higher speed, low chip area, and better throughput it usually operates on a fixed number of pixels. The proposed system works well for both arbitrary numbers of pixel groups and variable image resolution. The developed system is capable of embedding a secret message from two to eight-pixel groups with an image resolution of 512 × 512 pixels at a real-time video rate of 549 frames/s.. The complete design is implemented using RTL compliant Verilog code which fits into a single FPGA/ASIC chip with a gate density of two million gates.


Algorithms Image steganography Exploiting modification direction (EMD) Reconfigurable architectures Field programmable gate arrays (FPGA) 



  1. 1.
    Biswapati J, Debasis G, Kumar MS (2017) Dual-image based reversible data hiding scheme through pixel value differencing with exploiting modification direction. In: Proceedings of the first international conference on intelligent computing and communication. Springer, SingaporeGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Chakraborty S, Jalal AS, Bhatnagar C (2017) LSB based non-blind predictive edge adaptive image steganography. Multimed Tools Appl 76(6):7973–7987Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Denemark T, Fridrich J (2017) Steganography with multiple JPEG images of the same scene. IEEE Transactions on Information Forensics and Security 12(10):2308–2319Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    De-Sheng F, Jing Z-J, Zhao S-G, Fan J (2014) Reversible data hiding based on prediction-error histogram shifting and EMD mechanism. AEU Int J Electron Commun 68:933–943Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Dhawale CA, Jambhekar ND (2017) Digital image steganography. Advanced Image Processing Techniques and ApplicationsGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Fridrich J, Pevny T, Kodovsky J (2007) Statistically undetectable JPEG steganography: dead ends, challenges, and opportunities. In: Proceeding 9th workshop on multimedia and security. ACM, New York, pp 3–14Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Gómez-Hernández E, Feregrino-Uribe C, Cumplido R (2008) FPGA Hardware Architecture of the Steganographic Context Technique. IEEE 18th International Conference on Electronics, Communications and Computers, p 123–128Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Hong W, Chen T-S (2012) A novel data embedding method using adaptive pixel pair matching. IEEE Transactions on Information Forensics and Security 7(1)Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    W. James MacLean (2005) An Evaluation of the Suitability of FPGAs for Embedded Vision Systems. In: IEEE Computer Society Conference, Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition (CVPR) Workshops, p 131–131Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Jung K-H, Yoo K-Y (2009) Improved exploiting modification direction method by Modulus operation. International Journal of Signal Processing, Image Processing, and Pattern 2(1)Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Kasana G, Singh K, Bhatia SS (2017) EMD-based steganography techniques for JPEG-2000 encoded images. Int J Wavelets Multiresolution Inf Process 15(3):1750020MathSciNetGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Kieu TD, Chang C-C (2011) A steganographic scheme by fully exploiting modification directions. Expert Syst Appl 38:10648–10657Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Kim HJ, Kim C, Choi Y, Wang S, Zhang X (2010) Improved modification direction methods. Journal of Computers & Mathematics with Applications 60(2):319–325MathSciNetzbMATHGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Kumar V, Kumar D (2017) A modified DWT-based image steganography technique. Multimed Tools Appl:1–30Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Lee C-F, Wang Y-R, Chang C-C (2007) A steganographic method with high embedding capacity by improving exploiting modification direction. IEEE Proceedings on Intelligent Information Hiding and Multimedia Signal Processing 1Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Li J-J, Wu Y-H, Lee C-F, Chang C-C (2018) Generalized PVO-K embedding technique for reversible data hiding. International Journal of Network Security 20(1):65–77Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Manyika J, Chui M, Bughin J, Dobbs R, Bisson P, Marrs A (2013) Disruptive technologies: advances that will transform life, business, and the global economy. McKinsey Global Institute, San FranciscoGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Niu X, Ma M, Tang R, Yin Z (2015) Image steganography via fully exploiting modification direction. International Journal of Security and its Applications 9(5):243–254Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    Omoomi M, Samavi S, Dumitrescu S (2011) An efficient high payload ±1 data embedding scheme. J Multimed Tools Appl 54:201–218Google Scholar
  20. 20.
    Pradhan A, Sahu AK, Swain G, Sekhar KR (2016) Performance evaluation parameters of image steganography techniques. Research Advances in Integrated Navigation Systems (RAINS), IEEE, p 1–8Google Scholar
  21. 21.
    Rabie T, Kamel I (2017) Toward optimal embedding capacity for transform domain steganography: a quad-tree adaptive-region approach. J Multimed Tools Appl 76(6):8627–8650Google Scholar
  22. 22.
    Rajagopalan S, Amirtharajan R, Upadhyay HN, Rayappan JBB (2012) Survey and analysis of hardware cryptographic and steganographic systems on FPGA. J Appl Sci 12:201–210Google Scholar
  23. 23.
    Ramalingam B, Amirtharajan R, Rayappan JBB (2014) Stego on FPGA: an IWT approach. Sci World J 2014:192512, 9 pages. Google Scholar
  24. 24.
    Roy R, Changder S, Sarkar A, Debnath NC (2013) Evaluating Image Steganography Techniques: Future Research Challenges. International Conference on Computing, Management and Telecommunications (ComManTel 2013) [IEEE], pp. 309–314, January 21–24, 2013Google Scholar
  25. 25.
    Safaa Younus Alsaffawi Z (2017) Image steganography by using exploiting modification direction and knight tour algorithm. Journal of Al-Qadisiyah for Computer Science and Mathematics 8(1):1–11Google Scholar
  26. 26.
    Saidi M, Hermassi H, Rhouma R, Belghith S (2016) A new adaptive image steganography scheme based on DCT and chaotic map. Multimed Tools Appl 76:1–18Google Scholar
  27. 27.
    Shet KS, Aswath AR, Hanumantharaju MC, Gao X-Z (July 2016) Design and development of new reconfigurable architectures for LSB/multi-bit image steganography system. Multimed Tools Appl 76(11):13197–13219Google Scholar
  28. 28.
    Sharma VK, Srivastava DK (2017) Comprehensive data hiding technique for discrete wavelet transform-based image steganography using advanced encryption standard. Computing and Network Sustainability, Springer, Singapore 12:353–360Google Scholar
  29. 29.
    Shen S-Y, Huang L-H (2015) A data hiding scheme using pixel value differencing and improving exploiting modification directions. J Comput Secur 48:131–141Google Scholar
  30. 30.
    Shih FY (2017) Multimedia security: watermarking, steganography, and forensics. CRC Press, Boca RatonGoogle Scholar
  31. 31.
    Vallathan G, Balachandran K, Jayanthi K (2017) Enhanced data security and integrity using Contourlet transform for medical images. Indian J Sci Technol 10(8)Google Scholar
  32. 32.
    Wang Z-H, Kieu TD, Chang CC, Li MC (2010) A novel information concealing method based on exploiting modification direction. Journal of Information Hiding and Multimedia Signal Processing 1(1):1–9Google Scholar
  33. 33.
    Wang C-C, Kuo W-C, Huang Y-C, Wuu L-C (2017a) A high capacity data hiding scheme based on re-adjusted GEMD. J Multimed Tools Appl, ISSN: 1380–7501, p 1–15Google Scholar
  34. 34.
    Wang Z, Yin Z, Zhang X (2017b) Distortion function for JPEG steganography based on image texture and correlation in DCT domain. IETE Technical Review, p 1–8Google Scholar
  35. 35.
    Xu J, Zhang W, Jiang R, Hu X, Yu N (2017) Optimal structural similarity constraint for reversible data hiding. J Multimed Tools Appl 76(14):15491–15511Google Scholar
  36. 36.
    Yao H, Qin C, Tang Z, Tiana Y (2017) Improved dual-image reversible data hiding method using the selection strategy of shiftable pixels' coordinates with minimum distortion. Signal Process 135:26–35Google Scholar
  37. 37.
    Zaidan BB, Zaidan AA (2017) Software and hardware FPGA-based digital watermarking and steganography approaches: toward new methodology for evaluation and benchmarking using multi-criteria decision-making techniques. Journal of Circuits, Systems, and Computers 26(7):1750116Google Scholar
  38. 38.
    Zhang X, Wang S (Nov. 2006) Efficient Steganographic embedding by exploiting modification direction. IEEE Commun Lett 10(11):781–783Google Scholar
  39. 39.
    Zhou H, Chen K, Zhang W, Yu N (2017a) Comments on steganography using reversible texture synthesis. IEEE Trans Image Process 26(4):1623–1625MathSciNetGoogle Scholar
  40. 40.
    Zhou W, Zhang W, Yu N (2017b) A new rule for cost reassignment in adaptive steganography. IEEE Transactions on Information Forensics and Security 12(11):2654–2667Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Electronics and Communication EngineeringJSS Academy of Technical EducationBengaluruIndia
  2. 2.Department of Telecommunication EngineeringDayananda Sagar College of EngineeringBengaluruIndia
  3. 3.Department of Electronics and Communication EngineeringBMS Institute of Technology and ManagementBengaluruIndia
  4. 4.School of ComputingUniversity of Eastern FinlandKuopioFinland

Personalised recommendations