Facebook to start ad-targeting program with website tracking

Summary:The social network also said the new program will give users more control over the ads they see via a preferences tool.

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Facebook announced Thursday that it will soon begin an ad-targeting program that draws from users' browsing history and frequented apps.

The social network also said the new program will give users more control over the ads they see via a preferences tool, which Facebook said lets users see why they are seeing certain ads and allows them to make changes to their supposed interests.

The move comes as Facebook begins the ramp up of its advertising efforts to compete with the likes of Google for ad dollars. 

The concept of targeted advertising is not new and is a common practice throughout the Internet (and on Google). But given Facebook’s history with user privacy issues, the social network felt the need to offer up an explanation of the program and provided a link for those wishing to opt out of the tracking aspect. 

As for the preferences function, Facebook explained it as a tool "accessible from every ad on Facebook that explains why you're seeing a specific ad and lets you add and remove interests that we use to show you ads." 

Facebook said it plans to roll out the program over the next few weeks, starting with the US.

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Topics: Apps, Social Enterprise

About

Natalie Gagliordi is a staff writer for CBS Interactive based in Louisville, Kentucky, covering business technology for ZDNet. She previously worked as the editor of Kiosk Marketplace, an online B2B trade publication that focused on interactive self-service technology, while also contributing to additional websites that covered retail tec... Full Bio

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