Check What Facebook Knows About You

Most people are at least vaguely aware that Facebook tracks information about how you interact and use the service. Likes, ads you click on, things you comment on and things you don’t comment on, etc. It’s all data to build a profile about you that can be used for directed advertising.

If this makes you uncomfortable, you want to get rid of some directed ads, or if you are simply curious, here’s how to check on what FB has on you – and clean outĀ items you don’t like.

In Facebook, go to ‘Ad Preferences‘. At the top you’ll see tiles that identify Interests. These are grouped by sports, news, entertainment, etc. If you see something that isn’t an interest, just click the ‘x’ that appears in the upper right-hand corner when you hover your mouse over the tile.

Go through all the categories; People, Lifestyle and Culture, Business and Industry, Hobbies and Activities, Travel/Places, Food & Drink, Education, and Sports & Outdoors. I found quite a few preferences that I couldn’t explain (North Pole?) plus some that were just wrong. Getting rid of these helps reduce ads you’ll see.

Now scroll down to the Advertisers section. You’ll see a list of advertisers that already have your info. Remove any of these and Facebook claims you won’t see their ads any longer in Facebook.