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Digital halftoning deals with transforming a gray or color image into its binary version which is useful in printing applications. Dot diffusion is one of the prominent halftone methods which can yield superior image quality with parallel processing capabilities. In this paper, a rapid watermarking algorithm is proposed for dot-diffusion halftone images using adaptive class-matrix selection and modified error diffusion kernels. To process the image using an adaptive class matrix, the processing order of the class matrix is reversed and transposed, and for error diffusion the coefficients are replaced with different weights. For decoding, an effective strategy is proposed based on a correlation analysis and halftone statistics. The proposed strategy can successfully embed and decode the binary watermark from a single dot-diffused halftone image. From the experimental results, the proposed method is found to be effective in terms of good decoding accuracy, imperceptibility and robustness against various printed distortions.
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