Rethink Technology Research talks CryptoMedia

This entry was posted on Tuesday, October 4th, 2016.

DishTV India recently selected Rambus’ CryptoMedia Security Platform for use in its Pay TV satellite system. Essentially, CryptoMedia ensures secure distribution of premium content for cable and satellite operators with a hardware root-of-trust embedded in the set-top-box (STB) chipset that is resistant to side-channel attacks.


With 14.9 million subscribers and a growing user base, DishTV India required a simple, yet effective method of protecting premium content from unauthorized access. Ultimately, DishTV India chose Rambus’ CryptoMedia technology over competing solutions to facilitate the design of a secure, cardless set-top box.

Commenting on the deal, Rethink Technology Research analyst Thomas Flanagan stated: “The key to CryptoMedia is that it does not belong to any individual DRM provider. Multiple DRM providers can use [CryptoMedia], as long as they have a relationship with both the operator in question and can access credentials on the device.”

As Flanagan notes, CryptoMedia is embedded in over 70 chipsets from 6 different manufacturers.

“CryptoMedia has been installed in [a number of] set top box chips now, starting with Broadcom and Sigma in 2011 and MediaTek’s Mstar chips in 2014,” he added.

As we’ve previously discussed on Rambus Press, the CryptoMedia Content Protection Core can perhaps best be described as an independent key and rights management engine that protects content and services by guarding control words, services keys and other critical security assets.


Simply put, the Core is somewhat analogous to a non-removable smart card embedded in the actual chipset silicon of a set-top box. Since the Core is tightly integrated with additional security elements such as a descrambler, it is capable of providing a more robust security foundation than a standard, discrete smart card. As discussed above, the Core is available for use with any CAS, OTT or DRM system. Meaning, operators are not locked into a single vendor for the entire lifetime of a set-top box.

Beyond the Core itself, Rambus’ CryptoMedia Content Protection Services (CPS) provides pay TV operators and OTT media providers with robust security infrastructure integration for cryptographic data delivery, while offering engineering services and technical support before, during and after installation to ensure rapid system deployment. Last, but certainly not least, CryptoMedia also supports VIDITY-based formats – securely enabling the delivery of premium content across multiple devices, including smartphones, tablets and smart TVs.

Interested in learning more? You can check out our PayTV page here, our CryptoMedia product page here and our eBook on the subject here.