Filmmaker Splash Page


Protect Your Work

What steps can I take to protect my film from copyright infringement during production?

Security of the production dailies before and during transport to a secured laboratory is critical, as well as security of the computers or other electronic equipment used on set, so that no copies of the materials can be made without the knowledge and authority of the producer.
(For more details, please refer to Page 3 in IFTA’s guide on Copyright Protection on

What is the best way to protect my screener from being leaked when submitting to a film festival?

Forensic watermarking has been proven to be the most effective piracy deterrent for pre-release content, including e-Screeners. Use forensic watermarking and/or fingerprinting on all screeners in order to identify and locate infringing copies or sources of security breaches.

Note that the video screeners are securely hosted by IMDb. Access is restricted to the filmmaker and to any festivals to which the film is submitted. Links to the screener are only clickable through Withoutabox accounts via "signed URLs," so they cannot be forwarded or shared with anyone except authorized users of the festivals submitted to. Learn more

Do I need encryption for my DCP (Digital Cinema Print)? What are the advantages of encrypting my DCP?

Yes, encrypted DCPs are a good idea. You cannot play an encrypted DCPs without a matching “key.” You can’t share or reuse a key – keys only work for specific theatres, on specific dates and times. Someone who steals or finds a lost encrypted DCP can’t view the contents. No one can edit an encrypted DCP without a special type of key called a DKDM (“Distribution Key Delivery Message”). Learn more

Does every festival accept secure online screeners?

No. You should be aware of each festival’s policy before you make your submissions.

What measures can I take against someone ripping my film with a camcorder?

Use camcorder detection equipment at all festival screenings open to the public. Establish a “no cell phone or recording device” policy for all pre-release screenings.
(For more details, please refer to Page 14 in IFTA’s guide on Copyright Protection on

When is the most critical exposure window for pre-release piracy?

The most critical exposure window for pre-release piracy occurs after the completed film or program is available for delivery to distributors and prior to the first release. To address this exposure, online monitoring for infringing copies should begin 4-6 weeks prior to first release to make sure there are no infringing copies or "inside" sourced copies of materials. This guide will help you find you content on pirate websites.
(For more details, please refer to Page 5 in IFTA’s guide on Copyright Protection on

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