Abstract: In this paper, a novel reversible data hiding (RDH) algorithm is proposed for color images. The proposed algorithm mainly aims at maximizing the data hiding rate on images through various methods. This algorithm also enhances the contrast of the host image in order to improve its visual quality. Data are hidden into the three different layers of color images i.e. red, green and blue. This will help to increase the size of the data that can be hidden in the images which can be either binary values or images. In order to increase data hiding rate further, data can also be hidden into the least significant bits (LSBs) of all the bins with highest pixel value in the histogram. A location map is generated for memorizing the positions of these bins in the histogram. By applying all the above in data hiding will increase both data hiding rate as well as size of the data that can be embedded drastically. This paper also compares the time consumed for data hiding by different images. Data hiding can be extended to video images as future work.

Keywords: Contrast enhancement, histogram modification, location map, reversible data hiding, visual quality.