April Fool’s Day is in 10 minutes (started typing this at 11:50pm). I’ve decided to put together a quick and simple guide for those of you who’d like to find out if an image if real or not.
The simplest way to determine if an image is real is to do some lookups to see if exists elsewhere on the Internet:
- Google Images: go to Google Images, click on the camera in the search box, and either paste in the image URL or upload the image from your computer and do a search
- TinEye: go to TinEye and do a search
If it appears the image is original, let’s go one step further:
Go to FotoForensics, either paste the image URL or upload it, and it will display the same image. Hover over the image to view the Error Level Analysis (ELA).
To learn how to discern a real image from a modified one, read their excellent guide here.
Inconclusive? There’s one more step.
If it is an image that contains written content, like a letter, with places, names, positions, organizational names, search them all up to see if they correlate with one another.
Does the place/person/thing actually exist? And do they exist in the right place?
If there is no written content; is the image consistent with the poster’s past images?
On April 1, take everything with a grain of salt.