How To Opt Out of Interest Based Ads

Ever saw a page full of ads wondering how the page knows what you are interested in? They do it with mystical psychic powers! No, just kidding. It’s called interest based advertising. You will often hear them being referred as targeted or personalized ads.

Interest based ads use information gathered from your past activities like the websites you visit, the apps you use. They predict your preferences from your activity over time and show you the ads which you are most likely to be interested in.

For example, let’s say you installed a flight booking app on your smart phone. By tracking your habit, airline advertisers will be able to direct their ads to you. Sporting goods manufacturers might work with advertisement networks to target users who regularly visit sports sites (sports enthusiasts).

For advertisers, targeted ads open up the possibility to deliver ads based on interest and demographics. If the user visit’s the advertisers website, then they can use the data collected to show ads based on interactions.

But for a user, targeted ad means they are watching! No matter which site you are visiting, which device you are using, they are tracking you. This can be a bad news if you are a privacy-minded person like me. Fortunately, you can opt out of interest based ads if you want. In this article, we will show you how to opt out of interest based ads for Google, Microsoft, Twitter, Facebook, Apple, Amazon and Yahoo.

Google

Go to google.com/ads/preferences/ and disable the setting for Ads based on your interests.

On Android, go to Settings > Services > Ads and enable Opt-out of interest-based ads.

Microsoft

Go to choice.microsoft.com/en-US/opt-out and turn off the setting Personalized ads in this browser. You can also sign into your Microsoft account and disable Personalized ads wherever I use my Microsoft account. This will carry your settings to all Microsoft devices – Windows, Windows phone, Xbox and other devices.

If you are using Windows 8.1, Windows 10 or Windows Mobile, then you can opt out of interest based ads in apps by going to settings > Privacy and then turn off Let apps use my advertising ID for experiences across apps.

Twitter

Go to twitter.com/settings/security and uncheck Tailor ads based on information shared by ad partners.

To opt out of interest based ads on the mobile app, you need to disable personalized ads on your ios or android device.

Facebook

Go to facebook.com/settings/?tab=ads, edit Adverts based on my use of websites and apps and select off.

Apple

On your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, go to Settings > Privacy > Advertising and turn on Limit Ad Tracking.

In iTunes, sign into your account, go to Preferences > Store tab, check Limit Ad Tracking and save your settings.

On your Apple TV, go to Settings > iTunes Store and turn on Limit Ad Tracking.

Amazon

Go to amazon.com/adprefs and select Do Not Personalize Ads from Amazon for this Internet Browser. Note that this is a cookie-based setting. This means if you change browser or clear your cookies, you will have to change this setting again.

Yahoo

Go to privacy.yahoo.com/aim and click the button that says Opt Out.

Bonus – How Interest based ads work

Whenever a user visits a site that is a part of advertisement network or cooperates with an advertisement network, some information about the user is collected. This information may be related to the browser, the device or something else. This information is used to identify the user when the user visits another site or app using the same advertisement network. Over time, all information gathered from the user may help predict what the user is interested in.

So, what about. Do you like personalized ads? Tell us in the comments section below.

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Tapas Pal

Tapas pal is the founder of layerpoint.com and he is an avid Internet geek enthusiast and writer has deep interest in technology, Digital Marketing and love tools that increase human productivity.