Google knows a lot about you!
The internet giant collects plenty of data from your activity on the web and sells the same to advertisers for serving personalized, targeted adverts.
If like us, you also find this creepy, there’s an easy way to check what Google knows about you. You can also stop this practice, once and for all.
Here’s all about it.
Google builds a user profile for advertisers
If you have Web & App Activity settings enabled for your Google account, the search giant mines your activity not just from its own products (like Maps) but also from third-party sites, apps using its services.
This information is then used to estimate a range of things about you and build a profile that advertisers use for personalizing their ads.
What kind of information does Google estimate
The advertising profile that Google creates estimates a range of information, including things like your age, gender, relationship status, or if you have a child.
It even includes more personal stuff like things that may be of interest to you – pets, teams, brands, sports, cities, celebrities, or services.
So, in essence, it may reflect your own persona (to some extent!).
How to check this advertising profile information?
Now, in order to check what Google knows about you and fed into your profile, head over to your Google account settings and click on ‘Manage your data & personalization’.
Then, scroll down and hit the ‘Go to ad settings’ button under the ‘Ad Personalization’ tab. This will bring up a list of all the things Google thinks it knows about you.
Then, you can remove individual items
Once you’re on the list, you can remove individual interests by clicking on them and hitting the ‘turn off’ button.
For some options, like gender, Google may show an ‘update’ button instead of ‘turn off’, but you can ignore it.
After removing all the estimated interests, don’t forget to turn your Web & App Activity setting off, otherwise Google will glean this data again.