Digital Camera signature

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by oxy, Jan 3, 2004.

  1. oxy

    oxy Guest

    Hello,

    I am wondering if a particular digital camera always "imprints its
    own unique signature" on photographs its takes.
    Since some of the pixels are dead/not performing properly in every
    sensor (perhaps this is not correct!) the pictures taken with the
    camera will always have the same bad pixels showing up, sort of like a
    bullet out of a gun.

    Any thoughts,

    Thanks
     
    oxy, Jan 3, 2004
    #1
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  2. oxy

    steve Guest

    It might be possible to identify the camera that took a digital
    photograph using some kind of 'image fingerprinting' methodology,
    although I have not heard of any cases of this as of yet -- however it
    can only be a matter of time before someone tries to claim the ability
    to do so.

    (I could think of some situations -- i.e. kiddy porn -- where being able
    to match up a particular camera with a particular photograph would be of
    great interest to law enforcement personnel. Also, being able to
    positively prove proof of ownership of a particular photograph might be
    of great interest to legitimate professional photographers in the
    digital age. It remains to be seen if any particular technique utilized
    to 'fingerprint' a particular camera will stand up to independent review
    and scrutiny.)

    Of course, my 10D adds the camera body serial number in the exif
    information for each shot taken, although exif information would appear
    to be easily removed from image files.

    Given the degree of image processing done 'in camera' before image files
    are stored to media it might be possible that a unique identifier could
    be added to the image file using some kind of stenography technique.

    A well thought out technique might allow the unique identifier to be
    easily read if one knew how to appropriately process the image, but
    extremely difficult to find otherwise. Of course, once the 'cat was out
    of the bag', I would expect to see software tools available to remove
    any stenographic unique identifiers surreptitiously added to digital
    photographs in-camera.

    steve





    oxy wrote:
    > Hello,
    >
    > I am wondering if a particular digital camera always "imprints its
    > own unique signature" on photographs its takes.
    > Since some of the pixels are dead/not performing properly in every
    > sensor (perhaps this is not correct!) the pictures taken with the
    > camera will always have the same bad pixels showing up, sort of like a
    > bullet out of a gun.
    >
    > Any thoughts,
    >
    > Thanks
     
    steve, Jan 3, 2004
    #2
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  3. On 2004-01-03, steve <> wrote:
    > (I could think of some situations -- i.e. kiddy porn -- where being able
    > to match up a particular camera with a particular photograph would be of
    > great interest to law enforcement personnel. Also, being able to
    > positively prove proof of ownership of a particular photograph might be
    > of great interest to legitimate professional photographers in the
    > digital age. It remains to be seen if any particular technique utilized
    > to 'fingerprint' a particular camera will stand up to independent review
    > and scrutiny.)


    Even after post-processing, the dead pixels will often have had
    influence on the picture (local slight colorcast/off-color pixels/
    local blurriness), so fingerprinting should be possible as no 2
    sensors are the same.
     
    Povl H. Pedersen, Jan 3, 2004
    #3
  4. "steve" <> wrote in message
    news:%zqJb.641$...
    > (I could think of some situations -- i.e. kiddy porn -- where being able
    > to match up a particular camera with a particular photograph would be of
    > great interest to law enforcement personnel. Also, being able to
    > positively prove proof of ownership of a particular photograph might be
    > of great interest to legitimate professional photographers in the
    > digital age. It remains to be seen if any particular technique utilized
    > to 'fingerprint' a particular camera will stand up to independent review
    > and scrutiny.)
    >


    Hmmm...sounds like the reasoning anti-gun people use. "It's the CAMERA, not
    the photographer"

    Don't forget that the camera, like a gun, is only a tool. Just because a
    picture was taken with your camera does not mean you took it. And if you
    took a picture with my camera, do I own the rights? If Martin Scorsese shot
    a movie with my camera, do I own it?

    Juan
     
    Juan R. Pollo, Jan 3, 2004
    #4
  5. oxy

    steve Guest

    All valid points.

    Please keep in mind that I am not in favor of adding a 'unique id' to
    photos in-camera. I would believe that this is an invasion of privacy if
    it is done 'on the sly' without the knowledge of the photographer.

    In fact, I would probably refuse to purchase any camera that did this
    and did not allow the photographer to turn off the 'feature'

    My post was meant as a discussion of the possibilities and not a
    statement of support for the idea, even if it might assist law
    enforcement in some unique circumstances.

    steve


    Juan R. Pollo wrote:
    > "steve" <> wrote in message
    > news:%zqJb.641$...
    >
    >>(I could think of some situations -- i.e. kiddy porn -- where being able
    >>to match up a particular camera with a particular photograph would be of
    >>great interest to law enforcement personnel. Also, being able to
    >>positively prove proof of ownership of a particular photograph might be
    >>of great interest to legitimate professional photographers in the
    >>digital age. It remains to be seen if any particular technique utilized
    >>to 'fingerprint' a particular camera will stand up to independent review
    >>and scrutiny.)
    >>

    >
    >
    > Hmmm...sounds like the reasoning anti-gun people use. "It's the CAMERA, not
    > the photographer"
    >
    > Don't forget that the camera, like a gun, is only a tool. Just because a
    > picture was taken with your camera does not mean you took it. And if you
    > took a picture with my camera, do I own the rights? If Martin Scorsese shot
    > a movie with my camera, do I own it?
    >
    > Juan
    >
    >
     
    steve, Jan 3, 2004
    #5
  6. "steve" <> wrote in message
    news:Q2GJb.752$...
    > All valid points.
    >
    > Please keep in mind that I am not in favor of adding a 'unique id' to
    > photos in-camera. I would believe that this is an invasion of privacy if
    > it is done 'on the sly' without the knowledge of the photographer.
    >
    > In fact, I would probably refuse to purchase any camera that did this
    > and did not allow the photographer to turn off the 'feature'
    >
    > My post was meant as a discussion of the possibilities and not a
    > statement of support for the idea, even if it might assist law
    > enforcement in some unique circumstances.
    >


    Actually, I don't have a problem with a "unique ID" to cameras or other
    property. I think it would reduce thefts and increase recoveries of stolen
    property.

    My point addressed the mentality that just because something was done with
    an object, the object's owner must be responsible for the action.

    Juan
     
    Juan R. Pollo, Jan 3, 2004
    #6
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