There are billions of images on the internet. How do you verify their origin if you want to use some of them for your personal or commercial work?
Images you find on doing a Google search can be duplicated, stolen artwork, manipulated media, and so on. Can you independently try to search for its origin or verify if it is an original image? Or, do you need a professional to do that for you?
If you are talking about high-profile legal copyright issues and other legwork, you will surely need the help of a professional. But for everyday use, you can easily take the aid of a reverse image search tool.
What Is Reverse Image Search?
Reverse Image Search is a technique to search for the source (or other sources) where a particular image originated.
If you are curious about an image on your device, you can easily use some of the tools available for reverse image search and dig for more information about it.
Some of the use-cases where you can utilize reverse image search tools:
- To check if someone is using your copyrighted work without permission
- To identify a person or get the contact details on the web
- To check the authenticity of a picture
- To find out the source of the image
- To identify fake news
You can perform a reverse image search on your iPhone or Android smartphone. All you need to do is access a web browser (Desktop or mobile) and upload the image.
Advantages of a Reverse Image Search Tool 👍
Reverse image search tools have some excellent benefits.
- You can verify the authenticity of an image for free
- Save time from manual verification of an image on your device or someone’s social media profile.
- Find royalty-free images that you can use for your work
- Locate a place or settlement from a long-forgotten photo in your loft
- Find out information about unknown objects or unlabeled products
All these, and you do not even have to spend a penny for it. I think one of the most valuable benefits of a reverse image search tool is to be able to identify if someone else is using your picture or artwork.
Image theft is common and is often impossible to prevent. Hence, a tool to find out about an image comes in handy for such a work.
Let us take a look at some of the best reverse image search tools.
Note: Usually, the services do not store your data with a reverse image search. But, if you are looking for something sensitive, you may want to go through their privacy policies before proceeding.
TinEye is one of the most valuable options that you can add to chrome for quick searches.
You will have to upload the image or paste the image URL to get more information using TinEye. While it is free to use to start with, they offer enterprise/corporate offerings to automate image tracking and alert you if your image is used without authorization.
Unlike a regular image search tool, it focuses on various aspects of image recognition and computer vision. So, you get the choice to integrate its other products to verify images or authenticate them while you perform the search.
Reverse Image Search
Reverse Image Search is not an image search engine by itself, but it lets you upload photos and then gives you the option to choose from different reverse image search portals (Yandex, Google, and Bing).
If you want a one-stop-shop to quickly search for an image across the web, this could help you with it.
Pixsy is an interesting reverse search image tool where you require signing up to access it for free.
It lets you import images from various sources, including social media platforms and cloud storage services, which should come in handy. You can also directly upload photos from your computer to run a search.
Similar to TinEye, Pixsy also offers enterprise/business plans to let you automate tracking while getting legal help with copyright infringements as well.
Google’s image search is the most effective reverse search engine tool you can use on your desktop. They have billions of pictures from millions of web pages to list.
So, if you fail to find a match for your image using other tools, Google Images should be the best bet. You do not have to sign up to access the service, and you get the option to upload the image or paste the image URL.
Unlike some other search tools, even if there are no exact matches to the image you uploaded, you will get plenty of similar-looking (or themed) suggestions.
Do note that you will not get the option to upload or paste image URLs when using a mobile browser. To get the ability, you need to request the desktop site from your browser menu. Google may consider optimizing the website for mobile users.
Bing Visual Search
Bing’s image search portal is on par with Google Images. It also offers a “text mode” where you can select any piece of text in the image you uploaded to search to pinpoint any reverse image search results.
Of course, you can also try converting images to text, but this could be convenient.
You get some added advantages with the text mode to quickly locate landmarks, objects, and more. So, it is worth a try!
Yahoo Image Search
Yahoo Image Search does not support uploading images. So, it is not the most effective reverse image search tool. However, you can utilize the metadata or the file name of the original image for scanning through the database to see if it matches something identical.
Even though Yahoo is no longer an internet giant, it still crawls up a decent chunk of web pages along with the data for various images. So, it is worth a shot.
Wrapping Up 😎
There are plenty of reverse image search tools available. Some are geared towards enterprises, and some offer a massive collection of images without signing up.
The options listed in this article have the same purpose but with varying effectiveness and use-cases. Do explore and choose the best tool as per your requirements.