When can a photo be trusted?

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Tuesday
Oct012013

Has The Alleged Iranian Spy Been Photoshopped?

Israel’s domestic intelligence service released photos of an accused Iranian spy. Questions have emerged as to the possible authenticity of the photo. At first glance, the shadows in the photo seem somewhat odd. 

[Source: The Blaze]

In the above photo, the shadow of the telephone pole may seem at a peculiar angle as compared to the man’s shadow. Shown below is the result of a forensic shadow analysis used to determine if these shadows are physically plausible. The cast shadow from the pole, car, and man (red dots) and the attached shadows on the man’s shoulders (white dots), each constrain the projected location of the light source. Because these constraints have a common intersection (the black outlined region), the shadows in this photo are physically consistent.

More details about this forensic technique can be found at The Moon Landing Photos and Is That a Race Horse On The Roof.

 

 

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