Geospatial Digital Rights Management

A Spatial Data Infrastructure can give access to geographic information for any user of the Internet or known user. For some geographic information, the protection of services is not sufficient, because it can be relevant to control the usage even after the geographic information is stored on the client computer. So basically, access control does not allow to control the use, after the consumer has obtained the information; DRM can.

The goal of DRM is to protect the Intellectual Property even for the case, where the user has obtained the geographic information and like to use it locally. The concepts of GeoDRM provide a framework for controlling the usage of geographic inforamtion. Geo-specific are two aspects: First, nature of the information as it has geometry and second, the processes how geographic information is exchanged and used. Existing specifications that define a Rights Expression Language that allows to formulate the consumer's rights on the geographic information are ODRL and ISO 21000-5 (MPEG-REL). Currently, a geo-specific extension is being worked on based on ISO 21000-5.

In order to coordinate the specification and development of relevant standards, the OGC has founded the GeoDRM Working Group in April 2004. The working group has created the GeoDRM RM that is available as Topic 18 of the OGC Abstract Specification Volume.