March 24th, 2015 Business

video-securityAt some point or another you will need to decide whether video is a good option for your online course.

Depending on the content and the audience, using videos for elearning is often a great way to present the information.

In my experience, video presentation is often well suited for any training that requires demonstrations, but there are many other use-cases.

I’ve seen videos that are essentially audio only, but display the words of the audio (similar to closed captioning). You might be surprised to know that there are a good number of people who prefer learning with this approach.

If you’re selling your online course, then when you create a video you ultimately think about its security. In other words, you don’t want the video to be available for free.

I’ll preface this by saying you shouldn’t spend too much time worrying about the few people who will steal your video content. It’s probably safe to assume that 99.9% of your target customers are going to purchase your course and not choose a knock-off version. If they do, then you don’t want them as customers anyhow.

That said, it still makes sense to secure your videos. While the options below aren’t free, they are worth the investment if this is of high priority to you. Of course, you can always secure your video content for free by using a simple modified .htaccess file, but we’ll save the ‘nerd’ talk for another article.  🙂

1. VimeoPRO – This is my personal favorite for many reasons, but mainly because setting the security for a video is very easy. All you need to do is specify the exact URL that has access to play the video. If anyone attempts to get the direct video URL and play it in another browser or website page, it won’t play. VimeoPRO costs $199 per year.

2. Wistia – A popular choice for many, Wistia has security settings that are very similar to VimeoPRO. Where Wistia shines is that they also make it possible for you to capture emails in exchange for someone to view the video. This makes it possible for you to give away some of your online course content in exchange for the lead. To start getting these features, you’ll need to join at their $25/mo level.

3. SproutVideo – Private video hosting with an emphasis on security. Like many of the other options today, there are useful viewer analytics so you can gain insight into what videos are performing well. Pricing starts at $25/mo, but there is a free trial so that you can have a “look under the hood” before committing.

4. S3MediaVault – This solution was brought to my attention by an individual when they realized a previous recommendation (from the original article six years ago) no longer existed. While I don’t have direct experiencing in using it, the reviews are positive!

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About Justin Ferriman

Justin Ferriman started LearnDash, the WordPress LMS trusted by Fortune 500 companies, major universities, training organizations, and entrepreneurs worldwide for creating (and selling) their online courses. Justin's Homepage | Twitter

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I totally agree for the first one, it’s my favorite too. Interesting feature of the pro version, you can modify the look’n’feel of the player, and you can decide what to do at the end of the video.

For the 4th one, there are numerous plugin to perform this…

hxxps:// => From 47$ (for 2 sites) to 99$ (25 sites) (it’s the same company who make a concurrent plugin but as yours is better, it’s not a problem)


Ultimate LightBox hxxp:// (affiliate link) => from 40$ for 1 site, 80$ unlimited sites. Could protect videos but also pdf files from Amazon. Could display the video or make a nice lightbox effect.

Those are really good, specially the second one.


Thanks for sharing additional options Cedric!

Vimeo is being blocked in Indonesia due to porn content in vimeo, so it is not an option for me. I’ve tested wistia and it works pretty well and integration is easy as well.

Vimeo Pro apparently has issues with HTPPS based websites (like mine), and also Vimeo Pro uses iFrames in a way that hinders SEO. So I steered towards Wistia and Im looking forward to using LEARNDASH with it.

Avatar Paul D

Hi Justin,

do you know how the vimeo PRO version is different from vimeo PLUS?

the site says it offers

Password protection
Domain-level privacy

when the PRO version offers

Password protection
Domain-level privacy
Private, unlisted review pages

So my question is- do I need the last one (Private, unlisted review pages) to embed videos in courses, or is the Domain-level privacy enough?

also how is the Amazon S3 different from cloud, and how much does their storage cost..?

thank you.

Avatar Milena

Hi Milena-
The main feature that is relevant to most people in this regard is domain privacy, so if the ‘plus’ feature offers this, then that is a viable option.

Okay – so I’m having an issue – why won’t any players work with LearnDash – and it won’t even play embedded code from YouTube? Help!


Hi Carrie-

Thanks for the note. LearnDash/WordPress doesn’t have any issue with any of these programs (as well as YouTube). We’d be happy to help with your setup, be sure to open a ticket and provide screenshots of your configuration so that it’s added to the ticket queue.

Hi Justin,
Actually I was disappointed to know that VimeoPro videos can be very
easily downloadable irrespective of any setting.
This was admitted openly by Vimeo support people.
Any one can google it to ckeck.
Now I am exploring other options.
By the way is there any posts by you to help how to integrate ONLINE VIDEO PLATFORM
with LearnDash.

Avatar Durga Prasad

Justin, do you know if there’s an easy way to protect audio and PDFs inside courses without having to use S3 or Media Maestro?

I’m hoping to find a way for my students to skip this step bc I think the tech side is just too much for them.


PS So great having you on the summit!

I have decided to go with a video streaming provider for all these needs and even greater benefits. There is a company providing full encrypted streaming, viewer based watermarking & url hiding + licensing solutions to online course providers. It has free 5 GB trial and claims to have customers all across 6 continents. It might help to others as well.

Avatar tarun

But will this work with Learndash?
Meaning: What if a User (not the Admin) uploads a video to his/her own course. Will the upload go to the Admin’s VDOcipher account?
From what I understand using VDOcipher, only the VDOcipher account owner (e.g. the Admin of the Learndash site) can upload to that VDOcipher account. Correct me if I’m wrong.

Avatar David

Hi Justin! I just started using LearnDash and have looked every on how to upload videos. I’m using Powerpoint and export the presentation using iSpring. Can you help?

Thanks for the note. Happy to help, make sure to submit your support request at one of the places below so that it can be added to the queue:


I am having a problem with my Vimeo Pro account embedded videos not sending an End Video command that activates the Mark Complete button. Students then cannot complete the topic and progress.
Vimeo support suggested that Learn Dash might be using an older API!

Any thoughts.

Avatar Mark Prendergast

Hi Justin,
If I use the Instructor Role extension for LearnDash in my website, does each instructor have to have an account in Vimeo Pro to upload the videos?
Or do all instructors use the same Vimeo Pro account to login and upload the videos?
Or do I (the site owner) upload the videos of each instructor to my Vimeo Pro account?
Or is there any other option, like creating a channel for each course in Vimeo Pro (by using only one Vimeo Pro account), and assign upload videos permissions to the instructors, one channel per instructor?

Avatar Faisal

I’ve looked for a similar article to tell me how I can secure supporting course documentation such as pdfs in Learndash, any pointers? Many thanks.

Avatar Gary Allman

Any plugin really would do, found this one.

Does Learndash has a feature to upload videos directly to vimeo?

Avatar Mawia

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