I learned that jpg, png, bmp and most image files contain headers and plain text in them. I decided to open a jpg file in Notepad and saw a bunch of information and I was wondering if there was a way to find out the origin of the computer it came from or some other information.

  • There are loads of free tools, if you give this service an iPhone photo its will extract all the Exif data which now include gps with lat/long coors of where the photo was taken metapicz.com/#landing – rtn May 6 '16 at 16:02

Modern Smart phones embed GPS coordinates into pictures. http://www.howtogeek.com/211427/how-to-see-exactly-where-a-photo-was-taken-and-keep-your-location-private/

This is often how sought out individuals are found and detained because they take photos with their phones unaware the photo contains the location as well.

It all depends on the software/hardware/individual/etc taking the photo. Yes, its very possible, and its being done today.

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    I tried a EXIF data reader on several selfies from Twitter (random people) and none of them had GPS coordinates. I then found out that many/most social media websites strip EXIF data from photos. I just wanted to add this because I think it's worth noting. – Edward Severinsen May 7 '16 at 1:09
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    Facebook for example removes almost all EXIF data - however, we can only speculate about the reasons. – Lukas May 7 '16 at 12:42
  • @lukas while it may be stripped before serving it, there is no reason to think that it does not store this data for itself – user2813274 May 17 '16 at 13:02

With experience in the computer forensic field the short answer is Yes.

As other people said it's called EXIF data. You can get information such as camera settings and lens used, time and date etc. On some newer camera models GPS tagging is available. Also all new smartphones have gps on them. Meaning when the photo is taken the GPS coordinates go in the EXIF data file format. You can't track really but you can see where the photo was taken. There are a few free EXIF viewers such as the Opanda one. You can "play" with it to see what information you can get from different photos from different devices.

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