Another Way Find Out What Google Knows About You
From the sometimes ignominious and seemingly ubiquitous world of TikTok comes this tip from an influencer. In our defense, I don’t scour TikTok for tips, or hacks, or “how-to” videos. But this came to me via a news consolidation service. Really! Heaven forbid, EB would think I’d have enough free time to be a “TikTok’er”.
Anyway, a TikTok user said she typed “ad settings Google” (without the quotes) into a Google search and was shocked by how much information Google had collected about her. This seems a bit odd since she’s on TikTok and they collect and have access to way more information than Google.
But we march on…
Here’s a clip from the “news” (I use that word loosely here) “Woman Shows How to Find Out What Google Knows About You“
“A woman has shown how to find all the information Google has stored on you.
“TikTok user @yorgoandlea posted a short clip showing how you can find out what data Google knows about you.
“In the clip, she heads to Google and searches for ‘ad settings google’ and signs in, from here she scrolls down a list where you can quickly see that it has age, gender and even the languages she speaks stored.
“It also appears to show things she may be interested in, such as ‘architecture’ and ‘audio equipment’.
“The clip has racked up hundreds of thousands of views and has been flooded with comments from people who were surprised just how much Google knows about them.
“One person wrote: ‘…I tried it – the amount of information!’
“Someone else posted: “It’s scarily accurate.”
A third said: ‘This is why I disable all this stuff.’
One person said: ‘Why does mine say I’m 44+ I’m literally 19.’
Another chipped in: ‘Apparently I am 65-years-old and interested in Utah and reality TV shows.’
Anyway, on the page that opens, when you search for “Google ad settings” (the page is https://adssettings.google.com/authenticated) you’ll see your gender, your age, and the things Google thinks you’re interested in. Keep in mind that only some of it may be accurate.
You’ll also see a switch near the top of the page where you can turn off “Ad personalization”. But before you do, you need to know that won’t stop Google from collecting information, it will just mean you won’t see ads Google thinks you’re interested in. But you can flip the switch off.
And, if you read everything on that page, you’ll see this:
How your ads are personalized
Ads are based on personal info you’ve added to your Google Account, data from advertisers that partner with Google, and Google’s estimation of your interests. Choose any factor to learn more or update your preferences. Learn how to control the ads you see.
But don’t worry, folks, Google says they don’t sell your info. Really.
A note to EB: I was not playing around on TikTok, honest, I wasn’t!