It’s easy to think that if you monitor what you post on Facebook, your personal information won’t be exposed. Take one look at this super creepy setting on your profile and your mind may change. Turns out the social media app, like many other websites, has been keeping tabs on our activity and sharing this data with advertisers.
Along with these classifiers, Facebook also includes an explanation that states: “the categories in this section help advertisers reach people who are most likely to be interested in their products, services, and causes. We’ve added you to these categories based on information you’ve provided on Facebook and other activity.”
Ours were scary accurate — Facebook could even pinpoint the exact model of iPhone that we use.
The good news is that you can see exactly how Facebook classifies you to advertisers and remove any categories that you see unfit. Here’s how:
1. Under the drop down arrow in the top right corner of your homepage, click settings.
2. From there, click on “ads” in the list to the left.
3. Under ad preferences choose “your information” then “your categories”
4. You will then see a list of categories. To remove simply hover over and click the X.
Unfortunately, the one thing about Facebook is you can’t turn off ads all together. You can adjust your ad settings by clicking on the drop down arrow at the top of any ad and select “Why Am I Seeing This?” From there, you’ll find a prompt in the bottom right corner to manager your ad settings.
If you’re worried about companies outside of Facebook keeping tabs on your, you can opt out of letting them track your web activity to use for advertising through the Digital Advertising Alliance’s website.