Risks and Opportunities for Information Hiding in DICOM Standard

Mileva, Aleksandra and Caviglione, Luca and Velinov, Aleksandar and Wendzel, Steffen and Dimitrova, Vesna (2021) Risks and Opportunities for Information Hiding in DICOM Standard. In: CUING, ARES 2021, August 17–20, 2021, Vienna, Austria.

Full text not available from this repository.


The increasing application of ICT technologies to medicine opens new usage patterns. Among the various standards, the Digital Imaging and COmmunication in Medicine (DICOM) has been gaining momentum, mainly due to its complete coverage of the diagnostic pipeline, including key applications such as CT, MRI and ultrasound scanners. However, owing to its complex and multifaceted nature, DICOM is prone to many risks especially due to the vast and complex attack surface characterizing the composite interplay of services, formats and technologies at the basis of the standard. Luckily, DICOM exhibits some room for improving its security. Specifically, information hiding and steganography can be used in a twofold manner. On one hand, they can help to watermark diagnostic images to improve their resistance against tampering and alterations. On the other hand, the digital infrastructure at the basis of DICOM can lead to data leaks or malicious manipulations via artificial intelligence techniques. Therefore, in this work we introduce risks and opportunities when applying information hiding- based techniques to the DICOM standard. Our investigation highlights some opportunities as well as introduces possibilities of exploiting DICOM images to set up covert channels, i.e., hidden communication paths that can be used to exfiltrate data or launch attacks. To prove the effectiveness of our vision, this paper also showcases the performance evaluation of a covert channel built by applying text steganography principles on realistic DICOM images.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Subjects: Natural sciences > Computer and information sciences
Divisions: Faculty of Computer Science
Depositing User: Aleksandra Mileva
Date Deposited: 01 Sep 2021 18:22
Last Modified: 01 Sep 2021 18:22
URI: https://eprints.ugd.edu.mk/id/eprint/28393

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item