Reverse image search is the process of using an image as the starting point of your search to learn more about the picture, where it came from, or its subjects.
Why do people perform reverse image searches? Reasons vary, but there are typically two types of objectives:
Track images across the web
Use an image search extension to find all the places where an image is presented. This is useful for people like…
- Photographers, digital artists and designers who want to know if their proprietary work is being used without credit, consent, or in inappropriate ways.
- Content marketers who want to measure the impact of images used in their campaigns. For instance, let’s say you included a picture of a new product in a press release. Image search can help you track how far and wide that promotional image has spread.
- Anyone who’s posted personal pics. With so many people posting images of themselves on social media and elsewhere, sometimes a person’s face can unwittingly wind up on a McDonald’s ad in China
There are many reasons you might want to investigate the veracity of an image you find on the web…
- Fake news! Unscrupulous “news” sources have been known to use false images in stories to distort narratives. If you question images seen in a news article, research it yourself with an image search extension.
- Verify business and personal contacts. Sometimes people are not who they appear to be—literally. If you’ve been contacted by a questionable marketer on LinkedIn or you’re wondering if the person you met on a dating app is legit, investigate the image.
- Give image credit. If you find an image to use in your own published work—for example, a blog post—and you want to credit the source, use a reverse image search extension to track down the owner.
With these cases in mind, here are a few of the best reverse image search extensions out there…
Tineye Reverse Image Search
A pioneer in the image search field, Tineye uses complex visual identification features—like finding patterns in lines, textures, colors, and contours of an image—to look for precise copies of the image elsewhere on the web.
Click on any image on the web to search for it on TinEye. Recommended by Firefox!
Discover where an image came from, see how it is being used, check if modified versions exist or locate high resolution versions. Made with love by the TinEye team.
Tineye can also help you locate higher resolution versions of an image, should one exist; and it lets you know if the image in question is available for licensing.
Tineye image searches are private. Your searches are not tracked, nor are the images you search saved to the Tineye index.
Search by Image
Combine the power of a bunch of image search engines with the Search by Image browser extension. More than 30 image search indexes offered in all, including the big names like Tineye, Google, Bing, and Yandex, but also some interesting niche indexes like Pinterest and Getty Images.
A powerful reverse image search tool, with support for various search engines, such as Google, Bing, Yandex, Baidu and TinEye.
You’re free to set your favorite image search engine as the default, or get results from as many of the 30+ engines as you like. Search by Image settings are simple and straightforward.
Image Search Options
So easy to use. Simply right-click any image you find to pull up a context menu and select one of the available search engines, like Tineye, Google, Baidu, or Image Search Options’ very own image index called SauceNAO.
A customizable reverse image search tool that conveniently presents a variety of top image search engines.
If the extension doesn’t already offer your favorite image search engine, it’s easy to manually add it to Image Search Options.
Happy image hunting with a browser extension! Find more image and other search tools on addons.mozilla.org.