News of the CDC

News of the CDC

  • CDC brings transparency on content identification technologies to the copyright stakeholders

    2 December 2019

    Since 15th October 2019, the European Commission has organised a stakeholder dialogue under Article 17 of the Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market – (EU) 2019/790, which aims to maximise the availability of content on sharing services while respecting the rights of those involved in the creation and distribution of such content.

    The Cyber Data Coalition has been invited to make a technical presentation at the 3rd meeting of this dialog on 25th November 2019.

    The presentation was delivered by  Páll Gunnarsson, Chief Product Officer of Videntifier. It can be watched on the website of the European Commission from 12:27:50. It includes visual examples that show the efficiency of fingerprinting technologies.

    The purpose of the all-day meeting was to provide transparency on how content identification technologies actually work, which is essential to understand their capability and limitations.  The Cyber Data Coalition was the only industry alliance to provide such technical transparency. The other presentations provided valuable information on how to manage content online, but declined to provide technical information as such information was covered by proprietary rights.

    The Cyber Data Coalition will continue to participate upon invitation of the European Commission, to further contribute to the education and empowerment of the copyright owners and the platforms in managing protected content.


  • CDC invited to present on content identification technologies at the 3rd stakeholder meeting on the Copyright directive

    17 November 2019

    Since 15th October 2019, the European Commission has organised a stakeholder dialogue under Article 17 of the Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market – (EU) 2019/790, which aims to maximise the availability of content on sharing services while respecting the rights of those involved in the creation and distribution of such content.

    For the 3rd and 4th meetings due on 25th November and 16th December 2019, the Commission invited stakeholders to volunteer to make technical presentations as regards licensing and the application of content identification tools and technologies. Such tools and technologies are used both for licensing purposes and to prevent the availability of unauthorised content.

    The CDC has applied and has been invited to give a technical presentation on 25th November.

    With this presentation, the purpose of the CDC is to bring transparency on the capability of content identification technologies, their scalability, accuracy and affordability for large and small platforms.

    It will be represented by an engineer in computer vision from Videntifier, an Icelandic company that owes to a large extent its existence to European academic research in Iceland and France, and to the EU research programs. Videntifier is indeed a success story of the EUREKA program. Its technologies are used today by large global public and private entities as well as small entities in the field of child sexual abuse material, counter-terrorism and protection of copyright.

    Videntifier content identification technologies are based on SIFT, an algorithm developed by British Columbia University. This technology is in the public domain globally, except for the USA and Canada, where it will be in the public domain in March 2020. Videntifier has further improved the scalability of this algorithm in cooperation with IRISA, a French public research lab based in Rennes.

    The CDC is looking forward to making a positive contribution to the Stakeholders Dialogue, by providing technical information that will help content owners, content sharing services and users to understand the capability of technology.

    The webcasts of the first meeting can be found here and of the second meeting here.

  • Copyright directive: CDC welcomes the interest for more knowledge on the capability of content identification technology

    16 October 2019

    The First meeting of the Stakeholder Dialogue on Art 17 of the Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market* took place on 15th October 2019. It could be attended remotely and the webstream is still available for anyone to watch. It focused on music, video games, and software. A second meeting dedicated to images, videos and news will take place on 5th November 2019.

    From the perspective of the Cyber Data Coalition, the main outcomes of this first meeting are three-fold:

    – Copyright owners are focused on maximising the availability of copyrighted content online, pending adequate licensing agreements can be agreed upon.

    – The complexity regarding the ownership of rights (who owns what/manage which rights) cannot be underestimated.

    – It is an understatement to say that there is not among participants a common understanding of the current capability of content identification technologies, but there is a clear interest from both sides, such as European Digital Media Association (EDiMA) or GESAC (the European authors’ societies), that knowledge is shared on this aspect, in a transparent manner.

    CDC notes with satisfaction that the organisers of this dialogue have welcomed the proposal of our Coalition to provide technical information on the capability of content identification technologies. As the agenda of the meeting on 5th November is already fixed, it is understood that such technical input is not foreseen until after this second meeting.

    Technology will not solve by itself the complexity of the application of Article 17, it is only one of the critical elements for success. But the importance for policymakers to understand content identification technology cannot be underestimated.

    Therefore, CDC strongly encourages the organisers and participants in this dialogue to seek information from engineers with hands-on expertise in content identification and/or computer vision.

    Europe has world-class engineers, both from industry and academia. Its industry deploys state-of-the-art solutions to small and global platforms.  The implementation of the Copyright Directive shall be the opportunity to showcase this savoir-faire, for the benefits of all stakeholders.


  • Article 17 of the copyright directive : the capabilities of current technology must be appropriately presented

    19 September 2019

    The CDC has expressed its interest for participating in the Stakeholder Dialogue on the application of Article 17 of Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market (EU 2019/790) due on 15th October 2019 in Brussels.

    Our commitment to the European public debate is to provide the perspective of technology experts working at small and medium businesses, as developers, engineers and managers.

    While it is an understatement to stay article 17 (previously known as article 13 before the adoption of the Directive) has been controversial, the CDC believes it can positively contribute to enlightening the decisionmakers on what technology can do.

    Online content sharing service providers and rights-holders will require technology to implement and monitor the obligations set out by the Copyright Directive.

    This includes recognition technologies such as the use of visual fingerprints, to identify content and to determine whether it is allowed or prohibited.

    The implementation of Article 17 will expand the content identification market, incentivising technology companies to innovate and compete based on efficiency and effectiveness. They will thus align their incentives to the public good of a well-functioning internet that follows legal guidelines.

    The Cyber Data Coalition, whose members provide technology to both the rights-holders and the content sharing service providers, aims to contribute to the public debate with technical information on :
    – the technology developed by SMEs,
    – what this technology can do, and
    – whether it is capable of serving the smaller stakeholders while also scaling to the global platforms.

    We represent experts and companies that have already contributed directly to the enforcement of laws that work to limit the use and distribution of illegal content. The deployments range from small law-enforcement services to the world’s largest social networks. Therefore, we can provide real-world examples that demonstrate how content recognition solutions can scale to the largest platforms while being affordable by the smallest companies.

    Our experience is that today, unlike in the early days of the e-commerce directive, technology to identify and monitor content is much more affordable and scalable. This is key to enable the effective implementation of Article 17.

    Our shared objective is to make the implementation of the copyright directive a definite success. For that, the capabilities of current technology must be appropriately presented.

  • CDC technical workshop in the European Parliament on the capabilities and limitations of technology in identifying terrorist content online

    5 March 2019

    On the morning of the Tuesday 26th February 2019, the Cyber Data Coalition organised a technical workshop in the European Parliament on the capabilities and limitations of technology in identifying terrorist content online in the context of the recent proposal on preventing the dissemination of terrorist content online. The breakfast workshop was kindly hosted by Julie Ward MEP, the rapporteur for the European Parliament’s CULT opinion on the file.

    The CDC set out to discuss and consider the use of technology in identifying terrorist content online, as well as highlight the capabilities and limitations thereof. The meeting was attended by representatives from the European Commission’s Directorate General for Migration and Home Affairs (DG HOME), the Directorate General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology (DG CONNECT), EUROPOL’s  EU Internet Referral Unit, as well as from the European Parliament.

    The discussions traversed an array of considerations; from the role European SMEs and their technologies have to play in combating terrorist content online, the challenges encountered in Europe when combating terrorist content, and the changing face of the digital regulatory ecosystem ahead of the upcoming European legislative period.

    It was submitted that there is huge potential for European SMEs to contribute to the fight against terrorist content online. There is an opportunity to promote innovation in the European Union by investing in local technologies which can analyse and identify harmful content. CDC members confirmed that such technologies exist among European SMEs however, in order for this technology to be effective, it must be inputted with good and relevant data. Given the current dominance of multinational social media companies, such input can be difficult to achieve. The CDC encouraged the development of data sharing undertakings which would allow them to test their technologies in order to create more effective and efficient programmes which could identify, and potentially measure the dissemination of terrorist content.

    The updating of the regulatory ecosystem in the European Union will create new challenges in terms of the liability of companies when it comes to the issue of illegal content online. The CDC noted that there are other examples of regulatory regimes which are effective in removing other types of illegal content such as with Child Sexual Abuse Material (CSAM). There are lessons to be learned by such examples. The facilitation of the reporting from citizens is another example that has been effective in combating spam and could be used in identify terrorist content.

    We believe that the use of automated methods in fighting this type of content can be effective and can also be moulded around the framework of the eCommerce Directive and the Audio-Visual Media Directive, fully respecting the fundamental rights of users while also protecting the public from the dissemination of terrorist content and indeed other forms are harmful materials online.

    Members were encouraged to see the willingness of both officials from the Commission and Parliament in coming together with European SMEs and discuss the impact that they can have in ensuring that harmful content is identified and removed from the internet.

  • CDC invited to present at Technopolice 2019 in France

    10 February 2019

    CDC was invited to present at Technopolice 2019on the capabilities of European SMEs on the fight against digital fraud.

    Technopolice 2019 is a bi-annual conference organised by the French Ministry of Interior and focused on technico-operational approaches to combat crime and improve security. It was opened by Christophe Fichot, Comptroller General of the French National Police.

    The conference gathered 270 participants with cross-disciplinary expertise from the police, gendarmerie, judiciary, data protection experts, technology industry as well as journalists.

    CDC was represented by Fanch FRANCIS, Founder of Oak Branch, and Jean-Christophe LE TOQUIN, coordinator.

    More information on GendInfo, the official magazine of the French Gendarmerie

  • CDC partners with the 4th European Cybersecurity Forum CYBERSEC- 8-9 October 2018 in Krakow

    27 September 2018

    CDC partners with the 4th European Cybersecurity Forum – Cybersec held on 8-9 October 2018 in Krakow, Poland.

    CDC will be represented by Fanch FRANCIS, CEO and founder of Oak Branch, a company focused on Big Data Analytics, to transform data into intelligence and action, for both companies and governments.

    CYBERSEC is an annual public policy conference dedicated to the strategic challenges of cybersecurity, launched in 2015, a unique forum in CEE and one of the top five cybersecurity events in Europe.

    CYBERSEC’s mission is to build the foundations of mutual trust and translate challenges into new opportunities for a better tomorrow.

    CYBERSEC debates and discussions are held in four parallel thematic streams: State, Defence, Future and Business.

    Meet Fanch FRANCIS, CEO of Oak Branch, and Jean-Christophe LE TOQUIN, coordinator of the CDC, on 8-9 October 2018 in Krakow.

    More details :

  • Official French report on content detection technologies against copyright infringement

    20 April 2018

    The French High Council for Literary and Artistic Property (CSPLA), an independent advisory Council associated with the French Ministry of Culture, has released an English version of its report on the upcoming Article 13 of the Proposal for a Directive on copyright in the Digital Single Market : PDF Here

    Article 13 of the Proposed Directive creates an obligation for online platforms giving access to a large number of works protected by copyright and related rights to cooperate with the rightholders of these works, specifically by providing them with access to automatically protected content recognition tools and complaint management tools.

    The report was compiled by interviewing the largest online platforms (Google, Facebook…), rightsholders and providers of content detection technologies such as Videntifier, member of the CDC.

    The various technologies available on the market are summarized and assessed, and the price lists of different providers are provided. The High Council’s assessment is that “the cost of these [content identification] tools is still very reasonable for small platforms and is proportionate to their size” (page 22). One of its key recommendations is that “minimum required performance levels for automatic recognition tools” are defined.

    The proposed directive and this report are a step toward more proactive measures to control illegal and harmful content by online platforms, and the CDC will seek to provide its technical expertise in the preparation of this important new legislation.

  • CDC invited to speak on the European Commissions’ Subgroup on combatting racism and xenophobia

    19 March 2018

    On 12 March, the CDC was invited to speak on the European Commission’s High-Level Expert Group on combatting racism and xenophobia. The Expert Group comprises of EU Member States, Civil Society Organisations, and Representatives from large internet platforms. It aims to find ways to effectively tackle racism and xenophobia through thematic discussions on gaps, challenges and responses, promoting best practice exchange between key stakeholders.

    The CDC were able to give an insight into industry solutions through the use of state of the art technologies which are capable of identifying and removing illegal hate speech online. The Coalition presented in a closed meeting of the Member States and industry stakeholders, and then engaged in a wider discussion with Civil Society groups on best practices in tackling online racism, xenophobia and other forms of intolerance.