Dec 9, 2008

Tech - Days of pirated CDs, DVDs numbered

Washington, Dec 6 (IANS) The days of pirated CDs and DVDs are numbered, thanks to a novel optical technique developed by researchers in Spain that can differentiate pirated works from the original.

A technique developed by researchers at the University of Grenada makes it easy to identify whether a CD has been recorded through legitimate channels or just copied.

The cheap, fast and effective method relies on light diffraction on a CD surface to differentiate between original record and illegal copies, a University of Grenada statement said.

Optical CDs are the most visible means of distribution of digital information worldwide. However, their piracy is a serious problem which causes huge economic losses to legitimate manufacturers.

Original CDs are made by printing, through a process which is profitable for large print runs. However, copies are obtained by performing a series of marks on the surface through the 'burning' with laser of commercial recorders on an organic material with which a series of spiral grooves are made in a blank CD.

The technique developed by scientists in Spain has also been tested in DVDs. Researchers intend to develop it for the detection of pirated CDs for state-of-the-art devices like Blue-Ray or HD-DVD.

The discovery has been published in American Journal of Physics and is awaiting a patent.

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