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The Definitive Guide to Steganography with examples using latest tools.

Introduction to steganography and its analysis

Steganography is an practice of concealing a message inside an file,here the recipient or the intruder is unaware of the fact that observed data contains concealed information. Steganalysis is a study of detecting concealed messages from the steganography


The term ‘Steganography’ is derived from Greek word meaning ” covered or hidden writting” which dates back to 440 BC when the Greeks scraped the wax off of tablets, wrote on the wood underneath, and cover the message with the scraped off wax. The leaders used this technique to hide messages sent to other leaders.

The Germans introduced microdots during World War II, which were complete images, documents, and plans reduced into size of a dot and were attached to normal paperwork. 

Null Ciphers were also used to hide secret messages in an innocent looking normal message.

Steganography vs Cryptography

With the drastic growth of digital media, assurance of protection has become a genuine concern. Cryptography and Steganography are security providing techniques. 

Cryptography is about concealing the content of the message whereas Steganography is about concealing the existence of the message. In steganography the latter does not attempt to hide the fact that a concealed message exists. 

The advantage of Steganography is that stego image does not attract attention while a visible encrypted message can arouse suspicion. Whereas cryptography protects the confidentiality of a message, Steganography can be said to protect both messages and communicating parties. 

Steganography is a practice of concealing messages where apart from the sender and intended recipient,no one suspects the existence of the message, a form of security is assured.

Types of Steganography

  • Text Steganography
  • Image Steganography
  • Audio Steganography
  • Video Steganography
  • Network Steganography (Protocol Steganography)

Text Steganography

Text Steganography is concealing message within a text file.Techniques used to conceal the data are:

  • Lingustic method
  • Formed based method
  • Random and statistical generated method

Image Steganography

Image Steganography is concealing message within an image file. The image selected called the cover-image and the image obtained after steganography is called the Stego-image. Techniques used to conceal the data are:

  • Encrypt and scatter
  • Least significant bit insertion
  • Reduntant pattern encoding
  • Coding and cosine transformation
  • Masking and Filtering

Audio Steganography

In Audio Steganography the message is embedded in the audio signal which alters the binary sequence of the corresponding audio file.Techniques used to conceal the data are:

  • Least Significant Bit Encoding 
  • Priority Encoding 
  • Phase Coding 
  • Spread Spectrum

Video Steganography

In Video Steganography the message is embedded in digital video format. Also large amount of data can be concealed.The two classes of Video Steganography are:

  • Embedding data directly into the compressed data stream.
  • Embedding data in uncompressed raw video and compress it later.

Network Steganography(Protocol Steganography)

In Network Steganography the message is embedded within network control protocols used in data transmission such TCP, UDP etc.

Latest tools used for Steganography

Xiao Steganography

Xiao Steganography is an open source tool,which also allows users to encrypt the concealed file with a number of encryption algorithms (including RC4 and 3DES) and hashing algorithms (including SHA and MD5).



rSteg is an user friendly java based tool,let’s you conceal the message in image files.



Steghide is an open source tool,let’s you conceal the message in image and audio files.


SSuite Picsel

SSuite Picsel is an open source tool,let’s you conceal the message in image files.



OpenPuff is an professional tool,let’s you conceal the message in image, audio ,video and flash files.


Steganography has become one of the most dangerous forms of Cybersecurity attacks,here’s how

The hacker’s use steganography as weapon by concealing malicious data,it contains the ability to go undetected without the use of too many tools and systems. It is extremely complicated for organizations to detect this attack. Hence, organizations have to up-scale their security techniques and tweak the defense mechanism using Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning.Security and Vigilant techniques are incorporated into the strategy and infrastructural security.Using these pointers steganographic-based attacks can be taken care of significantly.

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