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A new cost function for spatial image steganography based on 2D-SSA and WMF.

Xie, Guoliang; Ren, Jinchang; Marshall, Stephen; Zhao, Huimin; Li, Huihui


Guoliang Xie

Jinchang Ren

Stephen Marshall

Huimin Zhao

Huihui Li


As an essential tool for secure communications, adaptive steganography aims to communicate secret information with the least security cost. Inspired by the Ranking Priority Profile (RPP), we propose a novel two-step cost function for adaptive steganography in this paper. The RPP mainly includes three rules, i.e. Complexity-First rule, the Clustering rule and the Spreading rule, to design a cost function. We use the two-dimensional Singular Spectrum Analysis (2D-SSA) and Weighted Median Filter (WMF) in designing the two-step cost function. The 2D-SSA is employed in selecting the key components and clustering the embedding positions, which follows the Complexity-First rule and the Clustering rule. Also, we deploy the Spreading rule to smooth the resulting image produced by 2D-SSA with WMF. Extensive experiments have shown the efficacy of the proposed method, which has improved performance over four benchmarking approaches against non-shared selection channel attack. It also provides comparable performance in selection-channel-aware scenarios, where the best results are observed when the relative payload is 0.3 bpp or larger. Besides, the proposed approach is much faster than other model-based methods.


XIE, G., REN, J., MARSHALL, S., ZHAO, H. and LI, H. 2021. A new cost function for spatial image steganography based on 2D-SSA and WMF. IEEE access [online], 9, pages 30604-30614. Available from:

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Feb 11, 2021
Online Publication Date Feb 18, 2021
Publication Date Feb 26, 2021
Deposit Date Feb 26, 2021
Publicly Available Date Feb 26, 2021
Journal IEEE Access
Electronic ISSN 2169-3536
Publisher Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 9
Pages 30604-30614
Keywords Image steganography; Feature extraction; Singular spectrum analysis (SSA); Weighted median filtering (WMF); Ranking priority profile; Cost function; Security; Tools; Payloads; Distortion; Spectral analysis; Matrix decomposition
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