How to Hide Secret Data In Image or Audio.
How to Hide Secret Data Inside Image or Audio.hide secret data is a technique called Steganography is the art of hiding information in plain sight, and in this tutorial, I’ll show you how to use Steghide — a very simple command line tool to do just that. In addition, I’ll go over a bit of conceptual background to help you understand what’s going on behind the scenes. This is a tool that’s simple, configurable, and only takes a few seconds to hide information in many file types.
Hide secret data in image
Embed Hidden Data into a File
Using Steghide is very easy. To install it from the terminal in Linux, just use apt.
apt-get install steghide
Once it’s installed, in order to embed data in a file, type the command below.
steghide embed -ef secretFile -cf coverFile -sf outputFile -z compressionLevel -e scheme
The arguments are broken down as follows:
- -ef specifies the path of the file that you want to hide. You can embed any kind of file inside of the cover file, including Python scripts or shell files.
- -cf is the file that the data is embedded into. This is restricted to BMP, JPEG, WAV, and AU files.
- -sf is an optional argument that specifies the output file. If this is omitted, the original cover file will be overwritten by your new steganographic file.
- -z specifies the compression level, between 1 and 9. If you prefer not to compress your file, use the argument -Z instead.
- -e specifies the type of encryption. Steghide supports a multitude of encryption schemes, and if this argument is omitted by default, Steghide will use 128-bit AES encryption. If you prefer not use encryption, simply type -e none.
In my example, I’m hiding secret text inside an image of a cat. I’m not overwriting the original image or compressing it, nor do I care about encryption right now.
Once you have executed the Steghide command, you will be prompted to set a password that will allow you to extract the embedded data later. So enter your passphrase and re-enter it to confirm. Once you get used to this process, it’ll only take seconds to hide your data inside an image or audio file with Steghide.
Extract Hidden Data from the File
Extracting hidden data from a steganographic image is even easier. The command uses the syntax below.
$ steghide extract -sf stegoFile -xf outputFile
Once you run this command, you’ll be prompted to enter the same password you created above in order to create the extracted file. It’s that simple!
Hiding Data in Images Is Just Too Easy
The advantage of steganography is that you can hide data in plain sight, but you can really blow it if you don’t follow some common sense rules. First, the small differences steganography introduces are hard to detect — unless you have the original.
Using an image you found off the internet without modifying it significantly makes it easy to detect that an image has hidden information. To check this, try a reverse Google Image search to make sure the original isn’t floating around somewhere.
I hope you enjoyed this tutorial and realized just how easy it is to use steganography. It literally only takes a moment to hide secret messages inside media files, and whether you’re doing it for copyright protection or just to be cool, steganography has a multitude of applications.
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