I want to build a website that will contain a lot of images. I don't want users who visit the website to be able to save the images.

I have blocked the right click option, but is there any other way to keep users from saving the images?

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    Blocking the right click has no effect at all to anybody with minimal knowledge. The only way to add some protection is a large watermark. – thorsten müller Jul 10 '13 at 13:08
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    You can not show the images to your audience. – Pieter B Jul 10 '13 at 13:08
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    hm k dudes I accept it. I'l try whethr is der any other solution or not...anyway thank you – nmkyuppie Jul 10 '13 at 13:20
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    Please don't use right-click blocking. It is an annoyance to your users because it also breaks lots and lots of other features of their web browsers, and it doesn't help at all against people who want to save your images. Try it. Press your right mouse button now. How many of the features you see would be legitimate use of your website? – Philipp Jul 10 '13 at 13:35

A common solution to this sort of problem is watermarking images. Stock photo sites which require membership or payment in order to download photos show sample photos with watermarks. In order to see the larger photo, you must already have access. You'll notice that you will never be able to see the large photo without the watermark without access because of this simple fact that once a user is seeing the photo, it is already on their hard drive and hence can be used (or misused) however they wish. At least a watermark guarantees they cannot have the untampered version.

Short of this, preventing right-clicking will stop a reasonable percentage of users, but it is no security measure, hence nothing can be done.

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    Yeah I understood. What my thought is the user can see the image but should not store it in their local drive. I'm just wanna know whether it is possible or not – nmkyuppie Jul 10 '13 at 13:32
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    @MrNallavan Not with current technology no. If you see it, it is because it is already downloaded. Suppose technology did exist that would allow you to see an image projected from another computer (like some sort of online remote desktop). You could still capture a screenshot of the browser and have a copy of that photo as you see it in the browser. In short, if you can see it, the user can use it. – Neil Jul 10 '13 at 13:36
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    Okay dude this is just my thought of implementation. Then I'll use water mark for my images. Thank you – nmkyuppie Jul 10 '13 at 13:44
  • @MrNallavan If you take that route, know that you should watermark the images on the server side. If you watermark the images on the client side, someone could reverse engineer the url for the untampered version. FYI :) – Neil Jul 10 '13 at 13:46

There is nothing you can do. If the browser can download an image, other non-browser tools can download it too. If somebody wants to save one of your images to their computer, they can find a way.


See Wikipedia's Analog Hole to confirm this implausibility. Best quote to summarize:

It is simply not possible to simultaneously display and conceal a signal.

(Especially when you have zero chance of controlling the hardware people will use to view this content)

However, in the chance that this is an XY problem, you can often provide tiny imperceptible watermarks in images that don't affect their visual quality. If the images appear in a newspaper later, uncredited, you can likely take the newspaper to court and point to your website's faded URL in the corner.

(Responding to edit): Blocking the right-click sounds like a decent idea to provide a minimal level of protection. Many users will have Javascript disabled, even without intending to hack your site, so they will still likely have no problem.

It may be worth clarifying if you just think that the right-click menu is an annoying part of your user experience (ie, right-clicking has a clear and logical effect on the UI, and the menu annoys users trying to do so). Even then, I think that many UI designers would disagree with you. I've been to well over 1,000 websites; even the ones overriding the right-click menu simply brought up a different one.

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