Three Billion Images Are Shared Daily Online & Around 85% are Unlicensed
with Estimated Revenue Lost at More than $600 Million Daily


COPYTRACK Analyzes Top Continents, Nations, & Cities for Stolen Images Worldwide
Top Infringers by Continent (COPYTRACK Global Infringement Report 2019)
Press release:

April 4, 2019, Berlin, Germany – COPYTRACK, leading worldwide image copyright enforcer, announced today The Global Infringement Report 2019 analyzing online image theft worldwide at: Prepared with COPYTRACK’s proprietary website crawlers that track illegal image use, COPYTRACK ran statistical analyses on more than 12,000 COPYTRACK user profiles. The COPYTRACK Global Infringement Report summarizes these results studied between December 2017 – December 2018. See the full report at: (note: report and graphics are available for free download and posting with credit to COPYTRACK).

Every day countless images are used all over the internet, many of which are stolen. Studies by COPYTRACK show that of the three billion images shared online each day, around 85% are unlicensed, with estimated revenue lost at more than $600 million daily. Many people don’t know that the use of others’ images is often a violation of copyright law. This unauthorized image use hurts photographers and rights-holders who lose considerable revenues. To raise awareness for the magnitude of online image theft, COPYTRACK investigated where and how most online image theft takes place.

Most Frequent Global Image Theft Offenders by Continent

In terms of image theft by continent, North America, the world’s third largest continent, is the most frequent offender, with 33.90% of illegal image use. Europe is the secondmost infringing continent with 31.40% and Asia follows closely behind in third place with 29.38%.

Top 10 Infringing Countries/Nations in North America (COPYTRACK Global Infringement Report 2019)

Image Theft by Country

COPYTRACK’s country-level comparison reveals that the U.S. is the world leader in image theft with 22.96% worldwide. This comes as no surprise, given the size of the country and the sheer number of websites that operate there. Less obvious, however, is that Panama, a country with only four million inhabitants, comes in at second with 6.76%.This anomaly is likely the result of “Privacy Protection Services,” a provider that registers third-party domains to Panama to mask the real owners’ personal information. China,considered by many to be the world leader in copying, comes in third place with a surprisingly small 6.57% – unexpected considering China boasts a population three times the size of the U.S.

)Top 20 Infringing Cities (COPYTRACK Global Infringement Report 2019

Even After Image Theft, Photographers & Other Rights-holders can Still File Claims for Fair Compensation

In addition to studying all continents and countries, COPYTRACK’s comprehensive Global Infringement Report 2019 also studied top infringing cities, Internet penetration, domains, and most stolen images sizes. The report shows that photographs and pictures are used illicitly and at a massive scale in nearly every country on earth, despite increased efforts by Google, Yahoo, and others to identify rights holders. “Fortunately, even after image theft has taken place, photographers and other rights-holders can still file claims for fair compensation with COPYTRACK. COPYTRACK’s service exists for this very reason and helps rights-holders enforce their image rights without the need of much effort or financial risk,” said Marcus Schmitt, CEO, COPYTRACK.


COPYTRACK protects image rights and handles licensing for photographers, publishers, news agencies, photo agencies, and e-commerce providers online worldwide. The company provides a start-to-finish service that guides users through the complicated world of online image theft without the need of expensive lawyers. COPYTRACK tracks images with its proprietary COPYTRACK “Reverse Image Search Technology.” COPYTRACK users simply mark images as used without a valid license and then can determine the fees or allow COPYTRACK to determine fees by an automatic license calculator. COPYTRACK takes care of image copyright enforcement, with successful cases in more than 90 countries. Founded in 2015 by Marcus Schmitt, CEO, and based in Berlin, Germany, COPYTRACK has more than 35 international employees that constantly monitor the online use of digital images.

For more information, see the website:, Facebook:, and Twitter:

COPYTRACK Global Infringement Report:

Info and Summary of Report:

Posted by at April 4, 2019
Filed in category: Imaging Insider, Newsstream, Press Releases, and tagged with: , , ,

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