By now in the movie, I'm sure many of you will already be aware that whenever we take a photo, certain hidden information is included within it. The image collects what are known as metadata. And did you know that when we share all those photos on our social networks, that information is also shared?
Before we begin, let's clarify something: in principle, metadata is totally harmless. Although, yes, there can always be someone who knows how to use this information to harm us in one way or another. Therefore, in many cases, the best thing to do is usually delete them and get rid of them directly. Something quite logical on the other hand, right?
What is the metadata of an image exactly?
What are commonly known as metadata are the EXIF data of an image. The acronym in English corresponds to “Exchangeable Image File Format ”or“ Exchangeable Image File Format”And its function, basically, is to collect technical information from an image or photograph.
For practical purposes, the EXIF data for an image includes information like this:
- Camera brand and model.
- Date and Time.
- Image compression type, resolution, and bit depth.
- Maximum aperture, flash intensity, ISO speed and exposure time.
- Origin of the image, authors, Copyright.
Input, this information seems harmless enough, and it also helps us to claim our copyright, in case someone steals a photo from us. Not bad.Some of the metadata that we can find in any image.
The problem is that some devices allow you to add other additional information to the images. For example, suppose we take a photo with the mobile camera with GPS or location service activated and we upload it to Facebook, or to Instagram.
In this case, the image is able to collect our geolocation, and someone wanting to give us a hard time, could analyze the metadata and identify the city or even the house where we live. This doesn't sound so good anymore, does it?
How to erase all EXIF metadata from an image or photo
Imagine that you have a DSLR camera and that you have been taking pictures with it for years. Anyone who has a digital copy of any of your photos will be able to see the make and model of your camera and even its serial number in some cases. With this you can track and compare the rest of your photos on the Internet, or even know your tricks as a photographer.
The American NSA has also confessed that they use metadata as a source of information and identification of people, something that should undoubtedly make us reflect on how far our privacy goes. But let's go to what matters, How do we get rid of the damn metadata?
Clearing metadata from Windows Explorer
If we have a PC with Windows 10 (or earlier versions), deleting metadata can be done really easily. We do not need to install any additional program, just locate the image and follow the following steps:
- We right click on the image and click on "Properties”.
- We move to the tab of "Details”. This is where the image metadata is displayed.
- To delete all EXIF data, click on "Remove properties and personal information”.
- A new window will open. In it, the option “Create a copy with all possible properties removed”. If we select "To accept”, The aforementioned copy will be created with all metadata removed.
- If, on the other hand, we mark "Remove the following properties ...”We will be able to selectively choose the metadata that we do not want to appear in the image.
If you use an image editor you also have it easy
If we work with image editors we will also be able to filter the metadata that we store in a simple way.
If we use Photoshop we only have to select the entire image (Ctrl + E or Ctrl + A), copy and paste it into a new document. This new document will not save any of the original image metadata. We can check it from "File -> File Information”.
For other editing programs such as GIMP, simply export the desired image to JPG format. Once we are in the export window, and uncheck the tab "Advanced options -> Save EXIF data”.
How to delete the metadata of a photo from the mobile
The most normal thing is that most of the photos we take with the mobile phone. For this reason, it is much more practical in some cases, to be able to erase the metadata directly from the smartphone.
Some cameras allow deleting certain data, such as the location, in the case of Xiaomi. Others offer more settings, and most smartphones simply don't allow you to restrict anything when it comes to EXIF data.In the settings of some cameras we can play with things like the location register
The most effective is undoubtedly to use a third-party app to delete metadata. In Android we have several applications, such as Photo EXIF Editor orEXIF Toolkit. For iPhone users, we find the app Metapho.
How to clear metadata for multiple images at once
If we have trouble individually removing the metadata from our image collection, the easiest thing to do is to use BatchPurifier Lite.
This Windows application allows clear the metadata of multiple JPEG images in one go. It is a freeware tool and very easy to use, so its use is highly recommended.
In short, if we are thinking of gaining a little more privacy and ensuring the integrity of the information that we upload to our RRSS, nothing better than to paste a good clean to the metadata of the photos that we share over the Internet. It is not a question of becoming paranoid, but a little caution never hurts.You have Telegram installed? Receive the best post of each day on our channel. Or if you prefer, find out everything from our Facebook page.