I am trying to determine when a photo was taken with a smart phone. It was sent to me, not taken from facebook. I've viewed the exif data but the only field that even references a date is the ICC profile date. What is this date? is this the date it was taken? if not, how can I view the date it was taken?


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It is the date and time the ICC Profile used by that image was first created. For example, my scanner inserts the same profile date for each image from 2006, even though I didn't have the scanner until 2010.

If you don't see any other date in the metadata, then it just isn't there. If it was a screenshot off of a phone and not the original image, for example, the metadata isn't going to be there. If it was taken from a website, it might also not be there because many sites, like Facebook and Imgur, wipe metadata from the files.

What Exiftool calls the ProfileDateTime tag is the dateTimeNumber in the ICC spec. If you check the Exiftool tag listing on MetaCPan, you'll see that it's byte 24, which is the same as in the ICC Profile Format Specification (page 21). It is defined in the Specs as "Date and time this profile was first created".

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    \$\begingroup\$ Also, if it was sent via MMS, that's another possible point where exif data was lost. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Sep 3, 2016 at 6:11

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