Digital rights management is an approach to copyright protection for digital media. With DRM organizations can apply full CASB data protection controls over the data that is being shared offline. Any sensitive content being downloaded will be encrypted, and only authorized users with the decryption clients will be able to decrypt the data, allowing secure offline collaboration.
DRM prevents unauthorized redistribution of digital media and keeps customers from illegally copying the content they have purchased. These products were developed after the widespread and rapid onset of online piracy of commercially marketed material.
Digital content is typically protected by copyright laws, but it can be very difficult to actually police this and keep people from copying the content. This technology makes it much more difficult or even impossible for people to steal content.
How DRM Works
DRM is usually implemented by embedding code that prevents users from copying the materials. It can also specify a particular time period during which users can access the content and limit the number of devices on which the content can be installed.
Publishers, authors and other content creators generally use an application to encrypt content, data, e-books, software, media or other copyrighted materials. They use tools to limit or restrict what users are able to do with their materials.
Digital rights management enables organizations to:
- Restrict or prevent users from editing or saving content
- Prevent or restrict users from sharing or forwarding content
- Restrict or prevent users from preventing content. Often, it will include a code that prevents documents or artwork from being printed multiple times.
- Forbid users from creating screenshots of content
- Set an expiration date on media, after which users won’t be able to access it, or limit the number of times a user opens or prints a PDF
- Lock access to certain IP addresses, locations or devices
- Watermark artwork and documents
- Encrypt sensitive data and build a security wrapper around it while it gets downloaded from the cloud
- Full control and visibility over sensitive data hosted in the cloud, or in motion
- Revoke user access rights on-the-fly to access sensitive data
DRM Use Cases
Digital rights management has a number of use cases. For example, companies can use it to block sensitive emails from being forwarded. Movie studios can include the software on its DVDs to prevent users from making more than two copies, thereby preventing widespread online piracy. E-book servers can restrict access to or copying of content based on constraints set by copyright holders.
Some customers see these techniques as too restrictive, but this technology was created to solve the real problem of consumers making copies of copyrighted materials. The technology enables publishers or authors to control what users can do with their content and prevent them from accessing or using certain assets. It is playing a huge role in data security today.