Ever wondered if there are any websites, ecommerce stores, or social media accounts out there using your images without your consent? Then wonder no longer as thanks to the Google reverse image search function you can do exactly that.
As the name alludes to, by reverse searching an image on Google a search of the Internet is performed but with an image rather than words in order to find similar images or content associated with the uploaded image. For a thorough scraping of websites try using the Zenserp Google Reverse Image Search API at https://zenserp.com/google-reverse-image-search-api/
Uploading an image
Once you have loaded up Google and navigated to the reverse image search page, you can then either drag and drop the image file directly into the search box or click on the small camera icon next to the search box and upload an image file from off of your device. Once done, click the spy glass icon and see what results come up for the search.
The results that are brought up can either be the same image but in different sizes, websites that have similar content, images that are visually similar, or websites with matching images on. It is the latter of these that you want to look out for when using the functions to see if anyone else out there on the Internet is using your images without your consent.
When a reverse image search is performed on Google only searches a very restricted and specific part of the entire Internet ecosystem. It does trall through websites, such as Pinterest and LinkedIn, but does not look on some social media platforms, such as Instagram and Twitter.
Performing a Google reverse image search is a great way of discovering content on the Internet that relates to a specific image(s), including determining how popular that image is. If you do find that an image of yours is being used elsewhere by someone else, although frustrating, you should take it as a sign of flattery and that you are doing things right. So much so, that other companies are effectively stealing your images.
On the results page of a reverse image search, you are displayed with a detailed list of websites on the Internet that have this image on and whether or not they have permission to use it. With this information, you have a good opportunity to build back links to your own website from those ones that have created the image to you, thus increasing the search engine ranking of your website. In those instances where your image has not been credited to you, then you have the right for those using it to do so.
If you purchase stock images and use them on your website, a reverse image search can act as a useful way to see what that same image is being used for by other people on their website. For example, you don’t want it to be used for conflicting reasons to your own as that would be confusing for customers.