Free Online Tool Recovers Stolen $9,000 Camera

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GadgetTrak camera database has been used to recover a stolen Nikon D3 camera valued at $9,000.

John Heller

While on assignment pro photographer John Heller had his $9,000 dollar Nikon D3 camera and lens kit stolen. At the time, he was at the Egyptian Theater in Hollywood for Getty Images.

Almost a year later, the professional photographer entered the camera’s serial number in GadgetTrak’s camera search tool, and found an exact match of photos taken by his camera recently posted to Flickr.

After seeking help from the police, Heller was able to track the person using his camera. The new owner was also a professional photographer and had purchased it from a third party, with receipts to prove the transaction. The camera was returned to Heller while an investigation is under way.

GadgetTrak claim it’s not the only instance expensive camera gear has been found and returned through its online tool.

GadgetTrak’s Camera Serial Search a free service that scans images posted online.

 

 

Heller’s Gear snapped by the perp
When a photo is taken, the camera used to capture the image has its serial number embedded in the file. GadgetTrak takes these serial numbers and compiles them into a searchable database. By entering a camera’s serial number, GadgetTrak generates all of the photos it has identified as being taken by that very camera.

It has an extensive database, with over 10 million camera serial numbers indexed, making it the largest database of its kind. Images are procured from professional sites, with Flickr’s database being sourced from 2006 onwards.

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