Pictures plus Google Images equals Hotlinking

Please take a moment and read the article of "Your Hard Work and the Web" that I wrote a few years ago. The reason for this post is simply an expansion of that article. I'm going to go into HOTLINKING a little more.

Where do they go to the the pictures?
The easiest and fastest way to find and sort through a handful of pictures is using Google Image Search. Using different keywords and different phrases will show pages of search results. Now the thief has his/her choice of picture.

Once a picture is chosen the click the picture and it brings them to the actual site to find the picture, or if they want, they can chose only the very picture they want.

So how does someone hotlink?
After finding the picture, they just need to RIGHT CLICK and get the picture address. After they have your pictures address, they just insert it into a <IMG> tag.

Once they have the address, add the code to their website (or blog), your picture will now be shown on their site, on your site and only YOU TO PICK UP THE FEES.

Why do you need to know about hotlinking?
1. You store the picture while being shown on a different website.
2. You pay for the data transfer and data storage.
3. They pose as the real owners while you are doing all the hard work.

These 3 reasons are the MAIN reasons why you need to know how to protect yourself the best you can. Please note: Nothing on the web is safe and secure, but you can stop the small stuff that will hit your wallet.

How do you stop hotlinking?
You can do a few adjustments which will only take a few seconds per picture and your chances of you picking up someone else's storage fees will greatly be reduced. Some cases your chances of being a victim of hotlinking is 0% (never happening).
1. Water Mark your pictures. For more on watermarking, please read this post.
2. Placing a few lines of code inside your .htaccess file.
3. Rename your pictures to a non-language word. If you have a picture of a red rose, don't name it "red_rose", instead name it "rrpg1". This picture name is code for "Red Rose Page 1" so you can easily find the picture in your "files" directory while Google has a hard time finding it.

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