What is a reverse image search?

Literally 'reverse search for image' means that you will search with an image instead of words (search terms).
How does that work?

You upload an image from your computer or you paste an image's URL into a program and it searches the internet and compares that image with images on other websites.

What can I use it for?

You can use Reverse Image Search to:

  • search for the source of an image,
  • finding other (higher) resolutions of the image,
  • discover web pages where the image is displayed,
  • track down the creator of the image,
  • find content related to the example image,
  • track down derivative works and manipulated versions.

Some advantages highlighted:

Verify the source of an image
With a reverse image search, you can trace the original source of an image and how the image has changed over time. It is particularly effective for verifying social media profiles, news stories, and event images.


Tracking copyrighted images
Photographers and content creators (for example, infographics) can use reverse image search to learn how their content is being used on the web. Creating your own images can help you track who is using your images, decide whether reuse is legal and appropriate, and whether or not to take action (you can have them removed or send an invoice).


Find similar images
Can help you find better photos or options for an image.

Reverse Image Search engines


TinEye is the pioneer in the field of image tracking since 2008.

Users can upload an image to the site or provide the URL of the image and the site will find similar images from the more than 44 billion image repository.

  • file sizes are limited to 20MB,
  • the image must be in JPG, PNG, or GIF format,
  • the results can be sorted by best match, most changed, biggest image, etc.
  • has free and paid versions; in the free version, the user is allowed to conduct 150 searches per month.

Since 2011, Google offers its users the option of locating images.

  • possibility to upload a file or search with URL,
  • there is no file size limit,
  • for Google Chrome users: while surfing easily accessible from the right-mouse-button menu, the option 'Search image in Google'
  • in the results, you will see "best guess for this image", different file sizes, and other pages with matching images.

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