Television

Conditional Access: A basic guide

MUMBAI: What is conditional access? How does it work? Is it prevalent globally? What should India do? Is the CAS Amendment a good enough framework?

These are among many more questions that are plaguing industry, planners and the viewer. To make CAS simpler and understandable for both the technophile and the technophobe, Indiantelevision.com scoured the net and came up with a list of resources on the WWW. We hope these will help clear out some of the cobwebs and haze around CAS. Happy Reading!!



 

Conditional access (CA) is a technology used to control access to digital television (DTV) services to authorized users by encrypting the transmitted programming. CA has been used for years for pay-TV services. There are numerous ATSC and DVB-compliant CA systems available for a broadcaster to choose from. The CA system provider provides the equipment and software to the broadcaster who then integrates the CA system into his equipment.

 

 

The following describes the conditional access process:

*The receiver receives the digital data stream.

*The data flows into the conditional access module, which contains the content provider's unscrambling algorithms.

*The conditional access module verifies the existence of a smart card that contains the subscriber's authorization code.

*If the authorization code is accepted, the conditional access module unscrambles the data and returns the data to the receiver. If the code is not accepted, the data remains scrambled restricting access.

*The receiver then decodes the data and outputs it for viewing.



A CA system consists of several basic components: Subscriber Management System (SMS): The SMS is a subsystem of the CA system that manages the subscriber's information and requests entitlement management messages (EMM) from the Subscriber Authorization System (SAS). An EMM provides general information about the subscriber and the status of the subscription. The EMM is sent with the ECM. The ECM is a data unit that contains the key for decrypting the transmitted programs.

Subscriber Authorization System (SAS): The SAS is a subsystem of the CA system that translates the information about the subscriber into an EMM at the request of the SMS. The SAS also ensures that the subscriber's security module receives the authorization needed to view the programs, and the SAS acts as a backup system in case of failure.

Security module: The security module, usually in the form of a smart card, extracts the EMM and ECM necessary for decrypting the transmitted programs. The security module is either embedded within the set-top box or in a PC Card that plugs into the set-top box.

Set-top box: The set-top box houses the security module that gives authorization for decrypting the transmitted programs. The set-top box also converts the digital signal to an analogue signal so an older television can display the programs. .

Smart Cards: For years, smart cards have been used for pay TV programming. Smart cards are inexpensive, allowing the content provider to issue updated smart cards periodically to prevent piracy. Detachable PC cards allow subscribers to use DVB services anywhere DVB technology is supported.

There are two DVB protocols used by CA systems: SimulCrypt and MultiCrypt. SimulCrypt uses multiple set-top boxes, each using a different CA system, to authorize the programs for display. The different ECMs and EMMs required by each CA system are transmitted simultaneously. Each set-top box recognizes and uses the appropriate ECM and EMM needed for authorization. The ATSC standard uses SimulCrypt. MultiCrypt allows multiple CA systems to be used with one set-top box by using a PC card with an embedded smart card for each CA system used. Each card is then plugged into a slot in the set-top box. Each card recognizes the ECM and EMM needed for authorization.

A typical CA process involves three basic elements: the broadcast equipment, the set-top box, and the security module. The broadcast equipment generates the encrypted programs that are transmitted to the subscriber. When these are transmitted, the set-top box filters out the signals and passes them to the security module. The security module then authorizes these programs for decryption. The programs are then descrypted in real time and sent back to the set-top box for display

Latest Reads

http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/drupal7.indiantelevision.co.in/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2017/11/17/ganga.jpg?itok=SbPCInsu
ZEEL to revamp Big Magic, Big Ganga

Zee Entertainment Enterprises Limited (ZEEL) still seems to be in a celebratory mood after its recent 25th year anniversary. After rebranding its entire Zee’s bouquet, the network is soon to revamp the Reliance Broadcast Network Limited’s (RBNL) television business that it acquired in November...

Television TV Channels GECs
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/drupal7.indiantelevision.co.in/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2017/11/17/chndra.jpg?itok=SsRnkyG_
Launch of ZEEL’s lifestyle channels round the corner

Living Foodz, which was first aired in 2015 replacing Zee Entertainment Enterprises Limited’s (ZEEL’s) Khana Khazana channel, will soon have a trio of new channels, adding to the network’s lifestyle bouquet.

Television TV Channels Factual & Documentary
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/drupal7.indiantelevision.co.in/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2017/11/17/spn.jpg?itok=WBljFguF
SPN India recognised as one of the best companies for women in India

Entertainment and sports broadcast network, Sony Pictures Networks India (SPN), has been recognised as one of the best 100 companies for women to work for in India for 2017.

Television TV Channels People
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/drupal7.indiantelevision.co.in/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2017/11/17/anil.jpg?itok=rp4oX9JR
Sabido TV scriptwriting workshop in Mumbai on 23 November

A unique scriptwriting workshop is being organized by the Hong Kong based One Talk Production group in partnership with the indiantelevision.com group from 23-27 November and 29-2 December 2017 in Mumbai.

Television TV Channels GECs
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/drupal7.indiantelevision.co.in/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2017/11/17/charlie.jpg?itok=JcvPrf27
BBC Global news Appoints Charlie Villar as new COO

BBC Global News Ltd, the BBC’s commercially funded international news arm, has announced the appointment of Charlie Villar to its newly-created Chief Operating Officer position.

Television TV Channels People
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/drupal7.indiantelevision.co.in/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2017/11/17/vicom.jpg?itok=XzmI9t6N
Viacom Inc misses EPS forecast but revenue beats expectations

Even as its India business, Viacom18, celebrates its 10th anniversary, Viacom Inc’s stock on Nasdaq came under pressure after missing the earnings per share (EPS) forecast for the fourth quarter ended September 30, 2017. The company also reported financial results for the fiscal year ended...

Television TV Channels English Entertainment
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/drupal7.indiantelevision.co.in/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2017/11/17/Rajesh_Kamat.jpg?itok=nQaRNSaU
People are Viacom18's strongest competitive edge, says Rajesh Kamat

The mood is celebratory at Viacom18’s offices as it readies for its invite-only tenth anniversary bash at Mumbai’s NSCI Dome on the evening of 17 November. The Reliance-Viacom joint venture satellite TV network is ranked among the top five–and probably in the top three in the Hindi GEC space–in...

Television TV Channels GECs
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/drupal7.indiantelevision.co.in/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2017/11/17/Danish_Khan.jpg?itok=8dS0Vx8s
'Porus' will alter the economics of the ecosystem, says SET's Danish Khan

MUMBAI: Gone are the days when high budget would only indicate stellar Bollywood movies. Today, even the Indian television industry is not leaving any stone unturned to give its audience the same feel and quality.

Television TV Channels GECs
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/drupal7.indiantelevision.co.in/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2017/11/17/Aditya_Pittie.jpg?itok=n3RxQhyN
Epic TV completes 3 years, launches new show 'Sharanam'

MUMBAI: Commemorating the completion of three years on Indian television on 19 November, infotainment channel Epic TV will add a range of new shows starting with Sharanam, which will be narrated by Juhi Chawla.

Television TV Channels GECs

Latest News

Load More

Sign up for our Newsletter

subscribe for latest stories