PKI, biometrics protect Hollywood’s big screen movies
31 July, 2014
category: Biometrics, Digital ID
For certain people heading to the movie theater might be deemed a hassle and instead of making the trip it might be easier to view the latest theatrical movie release in the comfort of their home screening room.
This option isn’t for everyone but for those lucky enough to have the means, movie studios want to make sure that the content isn’t being copied and sold elsewhere. To ensure the content PRIMA Cinema is using PKI technology from Thales to protect the data, says Richard Moulds, vice president of product strategy at Thales e-Security.
“We are normally focused on the payments market but this is an example of the digital cinema space using cryptography to protect distribution of new release movies at the peak of their value,” he adds. “Without cryptography and digital certificates it would not be possible to offer this service.”
The movie studios were hesitant to offer content without a high-level of protection, says Shaiwal Priyadarshi, CTO at PRIMA Cinema. The system used FIPS 140-2 certified cryptography to secure the data and Thales hardware security modules to generate and protect the keys. There are also unique digital watermarks in the background of all the data sent.
“We have hardware PKI to authenticate out devices and we use PKI to control communication to the backend,” Priyadarshi says. “Only trusted devices can connect and all the identities of our users and members have unique certificates associated with them.”
Customers apply for membership to PRIMA Cinema and have to purchase the player. The device includes a two-terabyte drive and a swipe fingerprint sensor, Priyadarshi says. Authorized users swipe their fingerprint in order to confirm a purchase, $500 for major studio releases and $250 for independent content.
“The fingerprint swipe sensors were different and have a nice user experience,” Priyadarshi says. “We wanted to guarantee that the person ordering the movie is in the room and they have a simple purchase experience.”
The PRIMA Cinema devices make use of Trusted Platform Modules to process PKI and the secure key, Moulds says. PRIMA is also using Thales CodeSafe, which enables the company the protect application code as well as the keys and digital certificates.