How can I protect my photos from copyright infringement?

streetphotographer2CC0Your photographs are protected by copyright from the moment you take them. However, you can take additional steps to provide stronger protection, including:

  • Registering your copyright. This allows you to recover attorney’s fees and statutory damages if you file a copyright infringement lawsuit.
  • Posting a copyright notice with your photographs. This warns viewers that your photograph is copyrighted and you intend to enforce your rights.
  • Adding a copyright notice and contact information in the metadata of any electronic copies of your photographs.
  • Adding a watermark to your photos, to provide notice of authorship and copyright, and discourage copying.
  • Disabling right-click. Depending on how your photographs are displayed online, you may be able to disable the right-click option, making it more difficult for people to download your photos.
  • Searching for infringement. You can use Google’s reverse image search to see if your photographs appear on the web without your authorization, and take appropriate action.

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