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Return to How To Copy Protect Images - The Best Methods Of Copy Protection For Images
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Copy Protect Images Here Using This FREE Watermarking Tool
After uploading you can set the
watermark type and message.
You can also email the new image
to anyone that you choose.
The Top Methods For Copy Protecting Images On Web Pages

The following explanation of Image Encryption to protect images includes samples at the bottom of the page:

4. Encrypted Images 3 star image protection technique
Image encryption for use on web pages is very different to the encryption used in file protection solutions, and the main difference is that files, including images, can be encrypted very simply for safe file storage, but it's not so easy to decrypt an image on the fly and display it on a web page without exposing the decrypted resource.

To properly protect the image it needs to remain in its encrypted form and to allow a viewer like a Java applet or Flash viewer to decrypt it and render it for normal display on the web page. This process can also be performed using ActiveX but  ActiveX is only support in one web browser (Internet Explorer) and only on Windows. Flash is not suitable because it's such an insecure process that it can be easily exploited to expose the very heart of your encryption secrets.

That leaves Java, and it just so happens that there is only one application available, and it's been around since 1998. Secure Image is supported in all popular web browsers across all operating systems. Unlike normal Java applets the Secure Image applet has been specially designed to decrypt images from an algorithm key based on the domain name of hosting site. The image itself remains encrypted even while being displayed, thus protecting it while stored in the browser's cache.

An exmple of the Secure Image security applet viewer is shown below. Here the image location is safe because the image is encrypted and cannot be displayed from anywhere except the site that it was encrypted for.

Security applet code for encrypted image example

You can download this encrypted image sample. Unzip and copy the folder to the root of your personal web server. The image has been encrypted and domain locked for "localhost". Then visit it using Internet Explorer. Full instructions are in the included Readme file.

While image encryption may offer no protection on its own from Printscreen or screen capture, it can prevent copy by page saves and mouse saves, and be safe from search and site grabbers. But the big plus, especially for an image stock library that may house thousands of quality originals, the images that are stored on the web site are safe from anyone who can get to them directly, which includes hosting staff and your webmaster.

Return to the image protection techniques list

The above mentioned methods for copy protecting images deal with images that are displayed online, from a web page. These methods are not suitable for images that you may want to send by email or provide as a download. For example, if sending an image to a client for their approval of your design, then the options for protecting the image are reduced to:

  1. Using the watermarking tool above to copy protect the image..
  2. Sending the image encapsulated in a secure document format like CopySafe PDF.
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If this is your image then you can deliver the full sized version with watermark to an email address of your choice.