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Applying and Analyzing Security using Images : Steganography v.s. Steganalysis

Applying and Analyzing Security using Images : Steganography v.s. Steganalysis

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Published by ijcsis
Steganography is an art of hiding a message in such a way that anyone is unaware of the message’s presence. It is an Image processing technique used for hiding information and challenges an eavesdropper to break into a message. Steganography is a Greek work which means “covered writing”. Steganalysis in opposite is a technique used to real the hidden messages. Cover images are used to embed information which results as stego images are further introduced on a communication channel for a secret conversation between parties. There are some characteristics in images that must be analyzed to lead us to the existence of a hidden message and identify where to look for the hidden information. Steganalysis is used to analyze if a secret communication is taking place through images. There are different tools for applying and analyzing security using images. In this paper Steganography and Steganalysis both techniques have been practiced and analyzed on images using xiao tool. The xiao tool also has built-in cryptographic algorithms, which adds another layer of security.
Steganography is an art of hiding a message in such a way that anyone is unaware of the message’s presence. It is an Image processing technique used for hiding information and challenges an eavesdropper to break into a message. Steganography is a Greek work which means “covered writing”. Steganalysis in opposite is a technique used to real the hidden messages. Cover images are used to embed information which results as stego images are further introduced on a communication channel for a secret conversation between parties. There are some characteristics in images that must be analyzed to lead us to the existence of a hidden message and identify where to look for the hidden information. Steganalysis is used to analyze if a secret communication is taking place through images. There are different tools for applying and analyzing security using images. In this paper Steganography and Steganalysis both techniques have been practiced and analyzed on images using xiao tool. The xiao tool also has built-in cryptographic algorithms, which adds another layer of security.

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Applying and Analyzing Security using Images
Steganography v.s. Steganalysis
Nighat Mir
Computer Science DepartmentEffat UniversityJeddah, Saudi Arabianighat_mir@hotmail.com 
Asrar Qadi
[2]
, Wissal Dandachi
[2]
Computer Science DepartmentEffat UniversityJeddah, Saudi Arabiaaqadi@effat.edu.sa, wdandachi@effat.edu.sa
 Abstract
 
Steganography is an art of hiding a message in such a way thatanyone is unaware of t
he message’s presence. It is an Image
processing technique used for hiding information and challengesan eavesdropper to break into a message. Steganography is a
Greek work which means “covered writing”. Steganalysis in
opposite is a technique used to real the hidden messages. Coverimages are used to embed information which results as stegoimages are further introduced on a communication channel for asecret conversation between parties. There are somecharacteristics in images that must be analyzed to lead us to theexistence of a hidden message and identify where to look for thehidden information. Steganalysis is used to analyze if a secretcommunication is taking place through images. There aredifferent tools for applying and analyzing security using images.In this paper Steganography and Steganalysis both techniqueshave been practiced and analyzed on images using xiao tool. Thexiao tool also has built-in cryptographic algorithms, which addsanother layer of security.
 Keywords-
Steganography; Steganalysis; cryptography;security; xiao
I.
 
I
NTRODUCTION
(
 DIFFERENT TCHNIQUES
)
 There are different methods for information security.Steganograohy and cryptography are two populartechniques but have different behavior.To control access to content a traditional approach is byusing cryptography, in which first data is encoded with astandard compressor and then to perform full encryption of the compressed bit stream with a standard cipher (DES,AES, IDEA, RSA etc.) [1]. A data that can be read andunderstood without any special measures is called plaintextand when is encrypted into an understandable form is calledcipher text. The method of converting plaintext into ciphertext is called encryption. The encrypted message is uselessfor everyone except the person who has the decryption keyand algorithm. The process of reverting cipher text to itsoriginal plaintext is called decryption.Steganography differs from cryptography. Cryptographyattempts to prevent a message between two parties beingdecoded by a third party who has intercepted the message.However, cryptography does not prevent the challengerfrom disturbing the communication channel between thetwo parties, thereby preventing any further communication.Steganography attempts to hide the very fact that any twoparties are conducting a private communication. Anadversary may know that the two parties arecommunicating, but this communication appears to the thirdparty to be a benign communication with no covert subtext.[2]Steganography uses stego-objects to hide or embed thedata into a cover image. Main purpose of Steganography isto guarantee no comprehension that a secret communicationis taking place by looking at the cover medium. It aims athiding data (text, image, audio, video etc.) in such a waythat there is no indication of the hidden message. This isachieved by using a cover file and an embedding file. The
term “cover” is used to describe the original data and the
information to be hidden in the cover data is called
“embedded” data. The “stego” contains both cover and
embedded data.The most prevalent cover objects in use are digitalimages because of their potential payload [3]. A usualdigital image of 640x480 pixels can hide approximately 300KB and a high resolution image can approximately hide 2.3MB data. Various compression algorithms are available butthe three most common are BMP, GIF and JPEG. In oursystem we have used BMP images as the selected tools onlysupport this type of compression and we have also preferredthis tool over other available tools as it supports BMP andGIF which offers lossless compression.There are many examples of Steganography systemswhich are generally available to hide the data or informationin images i.e. Jsteg, JPhide-works on JPEG and GIF,SecureEngine-hides information in BMP, GIF, HTM, andTXT files.The main objective of steganography is to conversesecurely in a completely undetectable manner [4] and toavoid depiction suspicion to the transmission of a hiddendata [5]. It is not to keep others from knowing the hiddeninformation, but it is to keep others from thinking that theinformation even exists. If a steganography method causes
(IJCSIS) International Journal of Computer Science and Information Security,Vol. 9, No. 4, April 2011100http://sites.google.com/site/ijcsis/ISSN 1947-5500
 
 
someone to suspect the carrier medium, then the method hasfailed [6].Steganalysis is a science to detect whether a givenmedium has hidden message in it. It includes the discoveryand destruction of hidden information [1]. Attacks andanalysis on hidden information may take several detectingforms i.e. detecting, extracting, disabling or destroyinghidden information. An attacker may also embed false orcounter information into the hidden image.It is possible to create a stego image that is not easy topercept with a careful selection of an appropriate coverimage and a good stego tool. The Majority of stego-imagesdo not expose visual clues. Once a stego image has beendiscovered then several attacks can be taken to disable ordestroy the hidden message. Determining a secret messageis an initial step in steganalysis and is considered as anattack on the hidden information. Second step towardsteganalysis is to temper the stego image.Security, Capacity and Robustness are three importantcharacteristics of information hiding systems. A lot of research has recently focused on using images as a cover fortransferring covert messages [7]. Security throughobscurity is one of the most trivial types of Steganographicalgorithms. It is called so because the main idea is makingwarden impossible to understand if some communicationexists by embedding the data in the unexpected places.Capacity refers to the amount of information surroundedin the cover file; for the security, it refers to the inability of a third-party to detect hidden information[7].Robustness ishiding the location of presence of the hidden information bycreating an information channel with a small bandwidth in awide data stream.Steganalysis technique that uses the Compression BitRate to detect the secret messages embedded intoimages degrades quality [6]. The degradation processis modeled as an optical distortion process that shows thedocument in a degraded state due to printing, photocopying,and/or scanning. Mathematically, it is studied by calculatingthe probability of flipped foreground/background pixels asfunction of distance from the boundaries.Using the compression bit rate quantitativemethodology, it will be able to predict the changes in theimage with the length of the embedded secret message withthe presence of noise imposed by the degradation process.The methodology is based on that the fact that the entropyof the stego signal is higher than the cover signal. Sinceentropy is unpredictable, using a compression techniquecould help to estimate the entropy signal, and as a resultstatistically distinguish the steganalysis of the image [7].II.
 
M
ETHODOLOGY
 There are many tools available for Image Processingtechniques for different types of operating systems such asWindows, Dos, Linux, Mac and UNIX. There aredifferences in tools which should be considered whilechoosing a tool to perform Steganography and the tool thatperform Steganalysis. There are many free tools availableon the Internet to perform steganography and Steganalysis.Listed below are few which have tested and analyzed beforefinalizing the tool which we have used to performexperiments.http://www.jjtc.com/Steganography/tools.htmlhttp://www.jjtc.com/Steganalysis/ http://xiao-steganography.en.softonic.com/ http://www.dound.com/Progs/Steg.htmIn the studied methodology an existing tool (xiao) isused for applying and analyzing security using images fordifferent types of input data which consists of a text, image,and audio and in video formats. One of the reasons to selectthis tool was based on the fact that it can apply both of thefunctions; embedding and extraction. xiao tool is used toapply steganography to secure data using differentcryptographic and hashing algorithms (RC2, RC4, DES, 3-DES, MD2, MD4, MD5 and SHA) and it hides informationinto a bitmap image BMP. This tool also supportsSteganalysis to analyze the hidden information on thebitmap images BMP and results into the original image andthe hidden file of above mentioned types.Xiao Steganography runs on Windows OS and we haveexperimented Version 2.6.01 for our system. It is a userfriendly tool to encode a text, audio, video and image into aBitmap file. User can follow the steps to perform thefollowing; click on add file load the target file, embed secretmessage, then choose on the cryptographic or hashalgorithms and type a password for protection and then savethe stego file as a BMP file. We have presented our resultsin the form of pictures below, before and after applying thesecurity aspects of the image processing. It is very hard torecognize and differentiate between the embedded andoriginal file and stands very well against visual perception.
Figure 1. General Block Diagram
(IJCSIS) International Journal of Computer Science and Information Security,Vol. 9, No. 4, April 2011101http://sites.google.com/site/ijcsis/ISSN 1947-5500
 
 
III.
 
P
ROPOSED
S
YSTEM
 Different types of multimedia type of data have beenused for the experiments and results. We have applied andtested the methodology on following types of covermedium:1.
 
Securing text in an image file2.
 
Securing an image in an image file3.
 
Securing an audio file in an image file4.
 
Securing a video file in an image file
 
 A.
 
 Experimental Results 1:
Applying, Steganography on an image for securing atext file.
Figure 2. System Diagram to hide a text fileFigure 3. BMP file Original imageFigure 4. BMP file with a hidden text file
A “text file” with a message along “There is a hiddenmessage” is embedded into the original image (figure 1)
and the
 
resultant image is shown in figure 2 which revealsno hidden information.
 A.1: Steganalysis: Retrieving the hidden message
Figure 5. Cover Image (BMP) and Text file
 B.
 
 Experimental Results 2:
Applying, Steganography on an image for securing animage file.
Figure 6. System Diagram to hide an imageFigure 7. Cover Image (BMP) and Image file(JPG)
 B.1: Steganalysis: Retrieving the hidden message
Figure 8. System Diagram to retrieve a hidden image
C.
 
 Experimental Results 3:
Applying, Steganography on an image for securing anAudio file.
Figure 9. System Diagram to hide an audio file
(IJCSIS) International Journal of Computer Science and Information Security,Vol. 9, No. 4, April 2011102http://sites.google.com/site/ijcsis/ISSN 1947-5500

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