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Q: How to make online images copy proof ( No Answer,   8 Comments )
Subject: How to make online images copy proof
Category: Computers
Asked by: crcrystal-ga
List Price: $5.00
Posted: 19 Feb 2003 18:07 PST
Expires: 21 Mar 2003 18:07 PST
Question ID: 163697
How do we make our website images, etc. so they cannot be copied? A
simple click on the images allows anyone to "steal" them. We are
spending a tremendous amount of time monitoring and pursuing the
"theft" of our intellectual material. Thank you.

Request for Question Clarification by tisme-ga on 19 Feb 2003 18:19 PST
Hi crcrystal,

It is pretty much impossible to make imagines on the internet
copyproof. The best you can do is insert a message in each image with
your website name and perhaps prevent the user from right clicking.

Someone who is determined could easily copy whatever appears on their
computer screen by doing a simple Print Screen and cutting around your
image. Are you interested in some HTML code that will prevent right
clicking on your website?


Request for Question Clarification by easterangel-ga on 19 Feb 2003 20:16 PST
Hi! I have found this resource for protecting your images but as the
author said it and as common knowledge, none of them is foolproof.,23102,8849,00.html

I did not post it as answer yet since I do not know what else have you
tried in the past. If you find these links adequate, I will post it as
answer and collect the fee.

Just let me know. :)
There is no answer at this time.

Subject: Re: How to make online images copy proof
From: pinkfreud-ga on 19 Feb 2003 18:17 PST
I do not believe there is any way to totally prevent images from being
stolen (anything that can be viewed can be copied,) but there are
simple tricks for thwarting casual users from swiping your graphics.

Here you will find some useful discussion on this subject, and some
Javascript that may help you:
Subject: Re: How to make online images copy proof
From: alan_dershowitz-ga on 20 Feb 2003 14:13 PST
Your website is sending a copy of the file to every person who looks
at it. There's nothing you can do about that. Thats like trying to
stop someone from recording your TV show. Once you've sent it to them,
your control is gone. Additionally, all those Javascript tricks to
stop "casual thieves" from taking your pictures don't work at all on
mozilla/netscape 6, or any browser with javascript shut off/no

I've noticed the way some photo sites protect their images.
1. watermark them--disadvantage, it's ugly.
2. make them small size, or low resolution--disadvantage, its ugly.
3. take the photo and selectively crop it so that a person can see the
quality of the image, but they don't get the whole
thing--disadvantage, you cannot judge quality of composition.

Lastly, as a hobby I collect pictures from websites (I don't repost
them anywhere though), and if a site tries to keep me from stealing
their pictures, it just makes me more determined to get them. On the
other hand, out of my 2 giabytes of pictures I don't think I have a
single picture that has a watermark on it, because I hate that.
Subject: Re: How to make online images copy proof
From: knowledge_seeker-ga on 20 Feb 2003 14:49 PST
Someone else shares your dilemma --

Q: How to reserve my pic not to be copied

Subject: Re: How to make online images copy proof
From: owain-ga on 21 Feb 2003 06:15 PST
I haven't checked all the links given by other responders, but one way
of frustrating image saving, that doesn't rely on Javascript, is to
use CSS (cascading style sheets). Place the image on the page and
then, using CSS, place a *transparent GIF* over the image. The
underneath image will show through the transparent GIF in the browser,
but when the user right-clicks to save the image they will save the
top image ie the GIF and not the underlying image.

However, anyone can still go into their browser cache and save the
image from there.


Subject: Re: How to make online images copy proof
From: borchart-ga on 23 Feb 2003 11:32 PST
You could insert your image into another object, like a shockwave file
or a java applet. The file could not be so easily reused then, but of
course anything that can be viewed on the screen can be copied to the
clipboard (screenshot) and saved as a file. But maybe some digital
rights protection software can also protect against that.
Subject: Re: How to make online images copy proof
From: kellyc-ga on 25 Feb 2003 03:25 PST
There is no way (as mentioned above) except not to put the image on
the web.  I would suggest you put a soft watermark (visible) with your
copyright information in the image, this may stop others from using
your image, but then again it may not.

You can also imbed an invisible watermark using Paintshop pro version
7.  Then if you find the image on a competitor's or unauthorized site,
you can check the image for your watermark, and then notify the
offending website that they have stolen a copyrighted image and demand
they take it down.  At least with your invisible watermark, you may
stand a better chance of legal action.

The only problem with the invisible watermark is that a print screen
will loose the watermark, so do not make it hard to copy the image. 
Saving the file to another format when not using Paintshop ver. 7
will/may also loose the watermark

Best wishes.
Subject: Re: How to make online images copy proof
From: ldavinci-ga on 07 Mar 2003 15:45 PST
You could probably use a SSL to encrypt the data and then use a custom
to decrypt the image and display it as a animated picture with random
interleaving from
frame to frame and a psuedo random 15/30 frame sequence and use
persistance of vision
to let the image to be reconstructed by the human eyes/brain.  You
have to ensure that
your application does not store the full image data as a single piece
in memory.  Again
it is difficult to evade sophisticated frame grabbing of the screen,
to prevent reconstructing
the image.You could make it a bit more tedious by displaying a random
single frame watermark
that does not overlap between the frames.
Subject: Re: How to make online images copy proof
From: floatabletr-ga on 04 Apr 2003 16:04 PST
I think its impossible.  If you really wanted the image all you have
to do is "print screen" open up a photo editor program(photoshop)
paste and then crop out the rest of the junk in the picture.

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