Facebook will now begin to show you more information about the ads you see on the social network.
The tech giant has announced a series of updates to its “Why am I seeing this ad?” and Ad Preferences tools with an aim to bring users greater transparency and control.
First off, the “Why am I seeing this ad?” section is about to get a lot more detailed. It will now share information about why you were targeted with a specific ad — including the interests or categories that matched you, and where that information came from, including data-brokers. You can also completely opt-out of all ads from a particular advertiser.
Secondly, under Ad Preferences, Facebook has added an “Advertisers and Businesses” tab, which will show you which third-party data brokers uploaded lists with your personal identifying information. For example, this could be a clothing store that uploaded a list of customer email addresses and used that info to target ads on Facebook.
TechCrunch had previously reported that Facebook was working on a feature will show when an advertiser used a data broker or an ad agency to add you to a customer list.
You can opt out from some of the data brokers by visiting: Settings > Ad Preferences > Advertisers and Businesses > Businesses who have uploaded and shared a list with your info > Tap on the company name > Privacy options.
While there is still no option to opt out completely from all kinds of ads, the new transparency tools give you more control over the ads you end up seeing on the platform.
Facebook has been continuously working to tweak its ad policies, especially after they were abused to meddle with electoral processes and run discriminatory housing ads in the US.
With the shadow of Cambridge Analytica data scandal and other privacy missteps looming large, Facebook’s updates are a step in the right direction towards making its data practices more clear.