The development of digital transport of television signals marks a change from traditional approaches for "secure" distribution using analog scrambling technology. The all-digital nature of these signals makes hard encryption of all program services and network information possible, and thus our expectations for good security performance over long periods of time in future digital compression systems is high.
At the same time there is much effort today to standardize elements and subsystems of this new technology, such that maximum benefits accrue from interoperability with related developing technologies and markets. This paper discusses the issues surrounding encryption in digital compression systems, and explores the possibilities for encryption standardization in certain areas of the transport level. Included are comments on replaceable "Smart Card" and "Processor Card" approaches and benefits.