How to Protect Your Online Photography

When it comes to safeguarding your images online, there are numerous methods to deter individuals from copying or disseminating your work.

How to protect your image

If you’re anything like me, you’ve likely posted your photos at some point or another on your website or blog or to an online gallery like 500px and Flickr. The advantage of displaying your photos is obvious. You want your visitors to be able to view your work; however, you also want the work you create to be safe and presented in the manner you’d like it to be and also where you would like it to be.

Finding previously uploaded or existing photos that have been made available for use without permission.

Google Images

One of the first things I would recommend is to go to the formidable Google Images page. While is unrivaled for searching for textual information, Google Images is the supreme pixel-based search engine. Google Images utilizes a special algorithm to locate images which is similar to yours as well as imagery that has a visual similarity. The most interesting aspect of Google Images is that you can drag and drop your images directly into the Google Images search bar. Of course, if you don’t want to look boring, you can choose to use an icon for cameras.


TinEye is a different reverse image search engine. It is very similar to Google Images, but it offers numerous additional features, like the ability to register your images. You can upload an image to TinEye to discover the source of the image and how it’s being used, even if any modified versions of it are available.

In addition, you can make use of it to find higher-resolution versions of your images (which is a bit absurd given the subject matter of this piece; however, I’m not going to get into that). It’s a great tool to find your images online.

You are doing Your Part to Protect Your Photos from being taken.

Watermarking is among the most important anti-plagiarism tools that you can use to prevent the loss of the work you’ve created. It’s also free and solves two issues in one go. The first is that it clearly indicates that you’d like your work protected, and it’s not licensed or free to be distributed. It also provides the possibility of self-promotion in return to your website or blog that increases the likelihood that your work is recognized or, if you prefer, you will gain new clients, followers, or fans.

There are a variety of options for watermarking, including invisible and visible the norm for photographers is to put your name at the lower or the side of your image. Personally, I suggest you include your website or blog or an online gallery such as Flickr or 500px to the watermark.

The option of clearly watermarking your image is available in two options. The first is my favorite method, which is a simple stamp placed in the lower or side of the image. It’s a nice way to claim ownership without hindering the image. So, the viewing experience of the user is perfect, and, if done properly, it does not take any attention away from your artwork.

The other option can be the watermark that is full. This option is for those who absolutely wish to control your images. This technique, however, reduces the quality of the image and, in my opinion, ruins the capability to appreciate the work. But, I’ve used this watermarking technique on clients who were aware that their work could be taken. There are a lot of instances of watermarking in stock photography. Of course, if the individual who is stealing the image truly wants, they could take the time to duplicate all watermarks, but it’s rarely truly done correctly.

Making a Legal Change

If your watermark is taken off by someone else, you could be in action under copyright law, which could result in additional damages for the person who is accused of violating it. You may refer to 17. USC SS 1202 – Integrity of information about copyright management

Metadata The Good and the Bad

Many photographers are conscious of the confidential information which is stored in your digital images. One example is EXIF which is “Exchangeable Image File Format” and is a standard that defines the formats used for images, sounds, and ancillary tags utilized by digital cameras, as well as scanners, smartphones as well as other systems. The two other types of metadata that are included can be embedded IPTC “International Press Telecommunications Council” and XMP “Extensible Metadata Platform.”

What is it that makes Metadata Amazing

Let’s look at the great aspect of metadata. In the first place, unless it’s intentionally removed, it’s always linked to your photo, as per this piece, which prevents photography piracy. This is an excellent digital advantage. It not only keeps an eye on your camera’s technical information, but it also holds copyright information.

The other benefit is that Metadata has the capability to include keywords in your photographs. The benefit this brings to the quality of your photographs is usually ignored by photographers. While the debate continues about whether metadata is utilized by search engines, I have discovered by my own experience that it can improve SEO. I’ll be covering this in an article in the near future.

Modifying the Copyright Information on Your Camera

The majority of DSLR cameras today let you add metadata directly to your photos through a menu within the settings of your camera. This will ensure that every photo that you take with your camera is in your digital image’s thread. Photo. This is something I strongly recommend you take care of.

Typically, you are able to include several lines that contain your copyright, name, and URL. Although most photographers include the information when working on their images, I prefer having the data in a file in order to prevent forgetting to attach it later.

Never upload a high-resolution image.

If you plan on uploading images for your blog or your preferred social media site, I recommend more than any other advice in this article to keep back from uploading images with the original resolution. For instance, if I take photos with the Canon 7D at full res 18 megapixels, I will only upload a photo of 4 mega-pixels at the very most to any social media site and online galleries. I generally limit my images to around 1200px, which is the largest size for my majority of Portfolio work online.

There are many photographers who’ve been ripped from social media only to be utilized overseas by stock art firms that sell the photos for free to you. Additionally, you can show that the photo is yours when somebody claims to have taken the picture. You can, of course, upgrade images to appear as if they are of an increased resolution; however, pixels will be able to distinguish fakes.

If you’re not selling your artwork on the internet in exchange for digital printing or for canvas art, I’d recommend staying clear of large images. It opens the way for digital criminals to take your work.

Ongoing Photovigilance

Google Alerts

This is an amazing gem of a suggestion. If you’re committed to keeping track of your images, Google alerts could be among the most effective tools that you can use. Google Alerts allows you to create triggers for keywords that send you an email in response to the criteria you input. It basically monitors the Web for exactly the content you are looking for.

This is basically turning Google Alerts into your own personal spider bot. It can be used to type in your name (I prefer quotes to wrap around a specific phrase, for instance, I have a set of My name “Erik Sacino” This helps to avoid the false readings). Additionally, you can search for specific titles of your photos. It is essential to ensure you have a solid nomenclature to distinguish your work and other images. I have used in the past a special alphanumeric combo such as “dragon_one_solargravity_3s88z2g3q.jpg. The chances of someone using “3s88z2g3q” is pretty rare, and you should have no problem finding your work.

Give all of your photos an Individual Name.

One of the interesting things I’ve observed is that the majority of digital thieves won’t change the name of the image. This is a win-win situation for you.

Furthermore, I’ve noticed that when someone steals your work, they usually copy the description directly from your photo. This is a great idea since you are able to tattoo your own words digitally.

My Experiment with a Unique Description Trigger

“This photograph is an incredible evening.” “This photo is one of the more breathtaking nights I’ve ever taken. The ratio of sky to the cloud, the stunning colors, and the wide field I was in, all of these factors were in my favor this evening. I was aware that at the time, this kind of thing would only happen only a handful of times in my lifetime.”

In Google Alerts, I’ve created an alert that will be triggered by”the phrase” (notice the quotation marks) “cloud in the sky, magnificent colors, the wide-field.” This phrase is as distinctive as a 56-digit alphanumeric sequence when utilized.

In conclusion

It is possible to make a difference to prevent your photo from being discredited or, more importantly, sold on the internet without your expertise by following a few simple steps. Be sure to watermark your images and include your copyright information in the metadata. Utilizing an automated search tool such as Google alerts can assist you in the fight to protect the intellectual rights of your work.

If you’re interested to learn the ways to get your Metadata to read or strip the data from your images, click here to go to my photography blog for more information.