Q&A: Can I remove the EXIF Data from my pictures before uploading them to Facebook?

remove-exif-dataQuestion from Mary:  I just learned that every picture taken with a digital camera has something called EXIF Data embedded within it that includes the location where the picture was taken.

I have lots of family pictures that were taken at my house and I’d rather not have my physical address out there for all the world to see.

Is there any way to remove the EXIF Data / location info before I upload my pics to Facebook? My camera is a Nikon and my computer is an Acer laptop.

Rick’s answer:  Mary, not all digital cameras have GPS/Geotagging built-in, but many of the newer ones do. You didn’t mention the model number of your Nikon so I can’t tell you whether it has GPS capability or not. You can easily find out however by doing a Google search on your camera brand and model number followed by the words Specs.

For example, if you have a Nikon D3300 you would search for:

Nikon D3300 Specs

Cameras with GPS capability will have that fact prominently noted in the specifications because GPS is a hot feature these days. (And in case you’re wondering, GPS is only available as an optional accessory on the Nikon D3100, so that camera doesn’t have GPS built-in.)

If your camera doesn’t have GPS capability, you don’t have to worry about removing the EXIF Data since there will be no location info embedded within it. If your camera does have GPS, you can easily turn it off by changing a simple menu setting. Refer to your camera’s user manual for instructions on how to do it.

And now, to answer your question, follow these steps to remove the EXIF Data from your photos:

1 – Open the folder containing your photos in Windows Explorer.

2 – Right-click on the first photo and click Properties.

3 – Select the Details tab.

4 – Click the Remove Properties and Personal Information link at the bottom of the “Properties” Window.

 5 – Select Remove the following properties from this file.

6 – Check the box beside every property that you would like to remove from the photo. If you’d like to remove ALL of the EXIF Data you can simply click the Select All button.

7 – Click Ok.

8 – Repeat steps 1-7 for each of the photos you’d like to remove the EXIF Data from.

And finally, there’s one last thing to consider: Virtually all current smart phones have GPS/Geotagging capability built-in, and it is usually turned on by default.

I strongly recommend turning your phone’s GPS radio off when it isn’t being used by mapping software or some other essential feature that needs to have it turned on in order to operate. Consult your phone’s user manual for instructions for turning GPS off.

There are also a number of great apps for both iPhone and Android that will easily remove the EXIF Data from the photos that are already stored on your phone. A simple search of your phone’s applicable app store will give you several great apps to choose from.

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