This paper presents a new human visual system (HVS) based adaptive digital watermarking scheme using discrete cosine transformation (DCT) and singular value decomposition (SVD) for copyright protection. For watermark embedding mask of the original image is computed using HVS model and original image is transformed into frequency domain using DCT. We embed watermark by modifying the singular values of DCT coefficient of the original image, by singular values of mask coefficient of original image and singular values of watermark logo. A reliable watermark extraction scheme is developed for the extraction of watermark from the distorted images. Experimental evaluation demonstrates that the proposed scheme is able to withstand a variety of attacks. © 2010 IEEE.