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How AMC is stepping up the fight against piracy

Broadcasters around the world have responded to the threat of internet piracy by offering viewers the chance to watch new hit shows at the same time around the world, or within hours of the first broadcast, trying to kill off the market for illegal streams taking advantage of the time it takes a show to air around the world.

But behind the scenes, organisations are working at beefing up internal security, so that they can securely trace international distribution and uncover weak links in the chain, from where episodes might be leaked onto the internet.

NexGuard, the leading provider of forensic watermarking technology and solutions, announced that AMC Networks is deploying the NexGuard forensic watermarking system at its New York, NY facilities. AMC Networks, the company behind the hit television shows “The Walking Dead” and “Better Call Saul” among many others.

With the NexGuard watermarking technology, AMC Networks acquires a system to forensically watermark its valuable video content with a unique identifier in post-production, making its worldwide distribution traceable and secure. This level of protection is particularly important for content owners looking at “day-and-date” access, in which content is made available on the same date globally over a number of distribution methods.

AMC Networks has chosen to deploy the NexGuard system in the form of software plug-ins for their transcoder farms, thereby ensuring a seamless fit in AMC Networks’ existing content post-production and distribution workflow.

Steve Pontillo, EVP & Chief Technology Officer, AMC Networks said: 
“Viewers all over the world demand day-and-date access to their favourite AMC Networks content. It is paramount for us to protect our assets when they are at their most valuable."
“NexGuard’s watermarking technology enables AMC Networks to trace the source of potential illegal copies of each video asset; this enhanced content security is a powerful deterrent against piracy and protects our revenue and that of our distribution partners.”

Harrie Tholen, Managing Director of NexGuard said:
“Series from AMC Networks, including “The Walking Dead”, finished the year among the top ten most popular and viewed series on television worldwide”
“We are delighted to work with AMC Networks to deploy our forensic watermarking technology to protect this valuable content.”