The majority of photos that you take with your smartphone or digital camera do not contain only information about the scenery that you have just taken a picture of, but also metadata (also known as Exif data). Depending on the configuration, this may include location-based information, technical details like shutter speed as well as information about data and time the photo was taken.
This does not have to be a issue, especially not if you are only using the photos in a private environment. When it comes to photo sharing on the Internet though, you may want to consider removing some, or even all of the contained metadata from the photo before you do so.
Lets say you want to sell something on eBay or Craigslist. Someone with malicious intent could look at the Exif data to find out where the photo was taken (likely your home), which may increase the likelihood of a burglary. Another example are photos of your kids playing, where you also may want to make sure that the location of that playground or place is not there in the open.
Before you start removing photo metadata from all of the digital pictures that you have taken, you may want to find out first what kind of information are saved by your digital camera in this regard. If the metadata is not revealing anything privacy-related that you would not want to share, then you may not need to run a program like Metanull after all.
If you spot location-based information, or other sensitive information, you may find a program like the aforementioned helpful.
Update: Metanull is no longer available. I suggest you check out this guide for alternatives. We have uploaded the latest working version to our servers though. Click on the following link to download the program: Metanull
Metanull is a free portable program for the Windows operating system that can process a single image, a directory, or a directory structure.
Everything is completed in three easy steps. First select the source in step one. Most users will probably select the folder processing mode here. If you want, check the scan subfolders option to recursively process all photos stored in subfolders as well.
Select the output directory for the processed, or cleaned, files, and hit the Null It! button afterwards. The program will process photos in those folders. I can't really say which formats are supported, it did however process jpg images during tests. A log is displayed informing you about the reduction in size that goes along with the metadata removal.
Metanull is a useful portable program. It is dead easy to use, and can process a large collection of photos in record time. The program is compatible with all versions of the windows operating system from Windows XP to the very latest versions. (via Dottech)
Advertising revenue is falling fast across the Internet, and independently-run sites like Ghacks are hit hardest by it. The advertising model in its current form is coming to an end, and we have to find other ways to continue operating this site.
We are committed to keeping our content free and independent, which means no paywalls, no sponsored posts, no annoying ad formats or subscription fees.
If you like our content, and would like to help, please consider making a contribution:
Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.