A Quick Guide to Digital Rights Management

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A Quick Guide to Digital Rights Management

In the digital world, a particular person or team may have several creations which can be processed by digital computers. Such works are said to be the Intellectual Property (IP) of the individual or company who generated the same and can be anything, including eBooks, technical papers in PDF format, images, online training courses, contract specifications, analyst reports, and product price lists. And, the general trend is that the people who are willing to access or use such content need to pay a certain amount or buy a license for a limited period from the IP owner.

However, there is enough scope for authorized users of digital works to share it, copy it or even print the material. For example, if a buyer of your eBook is able to download it and generate multiple copies of the same, he or she can easily start selling it in his or her name. And, such duplication or distribution of digital content can give rise to unauthorized use which nullifies the efforts of the person or company who generated it in the first place.

To put a check on such misuse and avoid any leakage of copyright information, a Digital Rights Management (DRM) system will prove invaluable to your business. Using DRM, you or your business can exercise your rights to control your own digital work or content in terms of who can access it and how they can do so. A solid DRM tool will even value your digital content and equip you with the ability to assign specific privileges to particular people whom you trust or who pay to get access to your digital work.

The kind of control you can achieve with DRM over your digitally published work is significantly better than what has been possible in the physical print world of the previous era. More importantly, DRM tools help you avoid people who access your IP from doing whatever they want with it. This proves to be a blessing for any confidential information or revenue-generating content that you intend to keep fully under your control.

The DRM controls are much more than just the normal IT controls of read, write, edit or modify, delete, print, and so on. The DRM software helps you manage the following controls:

●    Indicating who can access the content and for how long (expiry date).
●    Indicating how many times one can view the content.
●    Not providing any allowance for screen grabbing and printing or limiting the number of copies that can be printed with dynamically generated watermarks that display the user name, company name, email address, and more.
●    Limiting the access to one user per purchase or license and one machine as well as restricting access from certain countries, based on the IP addresses.

The above controls will work more effectively if your DRM system can use cryptography to ensure all the critical information is encrypted as it flows from one system or server to another, within or outside your company network. The advantage of having encryption would be that, even if your content falls into the wrong hands of an unauthorized user, he or she would not be able to do anything with it, without the decryption keys.

Clearly, DRM makes a whole lot of difference and ensures the security of your digital works. We hope that the above information about the use of DRM proves useful to you. Feel free to share your feedback or queries in the comments section below.

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