Experts Validate Cryptography Research’s Anti-Piracy Architecture

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., May 10, 2005 – As Hollywood movie studios and consumer electronics manufacturers consider how to protect high-definition video entertainment from piracy, Cryptography Research, Inc. (CRI) announced the results of a study released today by Independent Security Evaluators (ISE) evaluating the security technologies proposed for securing the HD DVD and Blu-ray formats. The report’s primary conclusion affirms that CRI’s Self-Protecting Digital Content (SPDC) technology complements the AACS key management method under development by the Advanced Access Content System Licensing Administrator (AACS LA) by providing critical format security needs not addressed by AACS alone.

The SPDC technology allows each disc to carry security software that secures its own playback. SPDC makes it possible for studios to address security problems by updating or renewing the security methods employed with each new content release. AACS provides methods for encrypting high-definition movies on high-definition formats, and offers a revocation system that can disable players which the AACS LA determines have been compromised, but does not provide renewable security. SPDC and AACS are both being considered by the DVD Forum and the Blu-ray Disc Association, which are currently developing the HD DVD and Blu-ray formats. The DVD Forum has created subcommittees to study the integration of the AACS and SPDC technologies into the HD DVD format.

“We have evaluated the SPDC architecture and believe it addresses critical security needs that cannot be addressed by cryptographic methods such as AACS alone,” said Avi Rubin, ISE Founder and Professor of Computer Science and technical director of the Information Security Institute at Johns Hopkins University. “Perfect security is unattainable, but by giving formats a way to renew security, SPDC can help correct security flaws and avoid permanently uncontrollable piracy or the need to revoke innocent customers’ players. Our researchers studied SPDC, and we believe the approach is sound and effective.”

“We are pleased that ISE has confirmed the value of our technology,” said Kit Rodgers, vice president of licensing at Cryptography Research. “SPDC provides security that is far more effective and consumer-friendly than any other approach. We believe that formats which choose to include our technology will have a much better likelihood of succeeding over the long term.”

The report can be downloaded from ISE’s website at

About AACS

Advanced Access Content System Licensing Administrator (AACS LA) is a group of companies who have proposed a specification (AACS) for encryption and key management of digital content stored on next generation optical media formats. For additional information including draft specifications, visit

About SPDC

With CRI’s Self-Protecting Digital Content architecture, each media disc carries encrypted content and its own decoding software. This software runs in a simple security interpreter in each player and can query the playback environment to detect and respond to attacks by pirates. If a particular disc, device or product line is compromised; subsequent titles can carry fresh security code that can address the specific attack without affecting the end-user experience. The SPDC architecture is designed to enable studios to use risk management approaches to secure their high-definition content portfolios and minimize piracy’s effect on their business.

About Independent Security Evaluators

Independent Security Evaluators (ISE) performs objective technical evaluations that are independent of any ties to vendors and special interests. The ISE team includes computer scientists, electrical engineers, and cryptographers. ISE experts have testified before the US Congress, served as expert witnesses, participated in creating standards, and evaluated systems for both government and private industry. ISE researchers have also published several influential books and dozens of scientific papers in the top refereed conferences and journals. They have also analyzed and helped repair several widely used commercial systems. ISE was formed in 2004 to offer this expertise to the private sector. For additional information please visit or call (443) 270-2296.

ISE was commissioned by CRI to conduct an independent and objective study. Except for this evaluation, there are no other commercial links between the companies and the content of the evaluation report is solely the responsibility of ISE.

About Cryptography Research, Inc.

Cryptography Research, Inc. provides services and technology to solve complex security problems. In addition to applied engineering work, CRI is actively involved in long-term research in areas including content protection, tamper resistance, network security and financial services. Security systems designed by Cryptography Research engineers annually protect more than $100 billion of commerce for wireless, telecommunications, financial, digital television and Internet industries. For additional information visit


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