New NEC technology detects pirated online videos "in seconds"

Software that helps to detect “illegal” video content on the web automatically isn’t really new, but NEC claims its technology has two selling points that sets it apart from similar solutions: speed and accuracy. The company says its system can identify pirated video material in a “matter of seconds”, with a detection rate of 96% and at a false alarm rate of just five in one million cases.

The way it works is that the software creates a fingerprint (video signature) for original video content and then matches that content with what’s out there on the web. NEC says the signature is just 76 bytes per frame in size, meaning an average home PC can process 1,000 hours of video material in one second.

Another bullet point worth mentioning is that copyright holders can now even detect if video scenes as short as two seconds (60 frames) have been pirated and put online somewhere. According to NEC, the system is able to capture illegal video content that has been altered in one form or the other as well. This includes video with added captions, which was taken inside a movie theater or copied from digital to analog.

The NEC tech is already approved to become one of the components in the upcoming MPEG-7 media content description standard.