Find Your Lost/Stolen Camera With Google Images?

Aug 29, 2011 • 9:24 am | comments (7) by twitter Google+ | Filed Under Google Search Engine

Google Image DataA Google Web Search Help thread has one Google user asking if it is possible to use Google Image search to locate his stolen camera.

He said, many cameras add a unique identifier to the images within the image in the exif data. If Google let you search images by exif data, maybe he can track down pictures taken with it by the person who stole the camera. Maybe he can then give this information to the police and get his camera back?

I should note, there is a search engine like this named Stolen Camera Finder and it either asks you to upload an image you took with the camera you lost or enter a serial number from your camera. If it can locate images with that camera's serial number then you may be in luck.

Googler, Jeff said it was a good idea. He said:

Thanks for this really interesting feature request! This could be a great use case for our recently launched dynamic landing pages. These pages can include EXIF information that is stored within the image itself. Here's a random example.

I'll make sure to take this request back to the team!

What do you think of this idea? Potential privacy issue or a good way to help users track down their cameras?

Forum discussion at Google Web Search Help.

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08/29/2011 04:53 pm

So, really what I'm reading is that one should make sure to open the picture in some editing software, select the image, then save it as a new image as that will lose all of the exif data. ???

Rick Bucich

08/29/2011 11:32 pm

Camera theft is a real issue, especially with high-end gear. It makes perfect sense to me assuming it can be done in such a manner that Google doesn't get into the stolen camera recovery business. Support could be a legal nightmare. Not sure why someone would want to strip out the data unless they're trying to save bandwidth (save-for-web which makes sense) or don't care if they lose their copyright info which is also embedded.

Deepak Gupta

08/30/2011 12:23 pm

Thanks for the advice. I was very confused about these priority and change frequency. Now I got understood. Thanks dude

Deepak Gupta

08/30/2011 12:28 pm

I'm not doing it right or my stuff's not good enough... I haven't found anything so far. Thank you for posting the link though

Eldad Sotnick-Yogev

09/01/2011 11:00 am

What a clever idea but as you can see from the comments already here some people are already thinking of how to get past the system. What a shame as the idea and peace of mind aspect would be a wonderful feature for any camera buyer; regardless of how high or low end


01/29/2012 11:29 am

Is there any update on this issue? Thanks

David Oppenheimer

05/22/2012 05:09 am

This would be very helpful for also keeping track of license uses of images.

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