3-D Printers to Have Digital Rights Management: Digital Rights Management (DRM) is the music and film industry's way of keeping you from illegally sharing their content, and now it may be coming to 3-D printing, reports TorrentFreak.

3-D printers, with the right printer cartridges, could ostensibly be made to print anything from a complete shoe to parts for a battleship. Their versatility allows 3-D printers to create any shape, including copyrighted works. This has some worried about printing piracy.

In response to an announcement from the popular piracy forum, PirateBay, a patent has surfaced outlining the methods to secure three-dimensional printed designs.

Essentially the patent says, "a digital fingerprint of 'restricted items' will be held externally and printers will be required to compare the plans of the item they’re being asked to print against those in a database. If there’s a match, printing will be disallowed or restricted," explains TorrentFreak.

Whether this new DRM for printing will stop piracy is unknown, but as 3-D printing becomes more mainstream, the lawyers and rights-holders are already preparing for battle. via TorrentFreak