The advertising identifier (ID) is a unique anonymous identifier on Android devices that is used for advertising purposes. While there is no option to turn it off, the option to safely reset the advertising ID exists. I do this often to create a different user profile and avoid targeted marketing on my Samsung phone.
App developers (and Google) can use the advertising identifier API to access the ID on user devices; for instance, to identify users and devices for targeted advertising.
It is only used by applications offered on Google Play and is the only allowed persistent identifier for all advertising purposes.
Resetting Advertising ID on Android
Simply follow the steps below to change your Android advertising ID:
1. Open Google Settings on your smartphone by tapping on Menu and then on Google Settings once all apps are displayed on the screen.
2. Locate and tap on the Ads menu under Services.
3. Tap on Reset advertising ID in the Ads menu.
4. Confirm the replacement when the confirmation prompt is displayed. Your Android ads identifier will be changed.
Once you reset the advertising ID, a new ID is displayed immediately on the same page. Since a new identifier is assigned now, advertisers cannot link past actions anymore to the device.
5. Bonus: Opt-out of interest-based ads as well on the same page.
This tells apps not to use the advertising ID for tracking purposes and to only show regular advertisements but not interest-based ads on the device.
It needs to be noted that older OS versions may not support the advertising ID. App developers may fall back to using other methods such as using the Android ID to track users anonymously.
Critical Information About Tracking IDs on Android
According to Google, apps must check the settings of the Android device and respect them. If interest-based ads are disabled on the device, apps must honor that. Failure to do so is a policy violation.
The content policy page offers additional information on how the advertising ID may be used by companies or developers. It states that companies may not link the advertising identifier to personal identifiable information or persistent device identifiers such as the IMEI or MAC address of the device without explicit consent.
Ikuesan Oluwaseun (CEO OFOFONOBS) is a Nigerian news carrier blogger, writer, entrepreneur and a web developer. We bring you the Nigerian News, Music and All Informative Messages On This Medium. Connect With Me Via: IG/Twitter: @ofofonobs Call/Whatsapp: +2348114313795