Block sensitive categories

Sensitive category blocks are one way you can protect your inventory. #Protections

You can block groups of ads that are considered "sensitive" due to the nature of the business or ad — such as Sensationalism or Significant Skin Exposure — from appearing on your network or specified inventory.

Our system classifies ads automatically, and we don't rely on advertiser-provided categorization. Our technology makes its best attempt to filter ads from the possible categories; however, we don't guarantee that it will block every related ad.

Sensitive category blocks apply to these transactions

  • Open Auctions
  • Private Auctions
  • First Look

Learn more about transaction types.

Get started

  1. Sign in to Google Ad Manager.
  2. Click Protections and then Protections
  3. Click New protection and then Ad content
  4. Name your protection.
  5. From the "Inventory type" dropdown, select the medium on which you want to control the display of ads, such as Mobile app.
  6. The default is to apply the protection to all inventory. To target specific inventory:
    • Select Only protect specified inventory, click Add targeting, select an item from the dropdown, and make your targeting selections.
    • Learn more about targeting in protections.
  7. Under "Blocks," click Add next to "Sensitive categories".
  8. Click the toggle next to the sensitive category to choose whose ads you want to exclude.
  9. Click Update.
  10. Add more protections as needed and click Save.
Once you block sensitive categories, you can always run an experiment to unblock a category on a percent of the traffic to evaluate how much revenue is impacted.

Available sensitive categories

The following standard sensitive categories are supported for ads in 17 languages (Arabic, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Dutch, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Thai, Turkish, and Vietnamese), except where noted otherwise.

Bahasa (Indonesian) is supported only for Sensationalism.

To browse this page, click to see the details of any policy.

You can also expand all and press Ctrl + F (Command ⌘ + F, for Mac) to find information by keyword.

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Astrology and esoteric

Includes zodiac, horoscopes, love spells, potions, and psychic-related ads. (This category is specific to English and Portuguese).

Consumer Loans

Includes consumer lending and loans. (This category is specific to Japanese and Korean.)

Cosmetic procedures and body modification

Includes lifts, suctions, lasers, hair removal and restoration, tattoos, and body modification.


Includes dating services and online dating communities. Also includes chat sites and apps for meeting new people in general.

Downloadable Utilities

Software for download which is designed to enhance the functionality of an operating system or device, whether desktop or mobile. Typical examples include anti-virus software, file converters, driver updaters, system cleaners, download managers, disk defragmenters, codecs, browser toolbars, ringtones, screensavers, wallpapers, and so on.

Drugs supplements

Includes pharmaceuticals, vitamins, supplements, and related retailers.

Get rich quick
Ads that offer to share lucrative business secrets with consumers, or which offer significant money or merchandise for little or nothing in return. Includes multi-level marketing, work from home offers, and so on; also includes online surveys.
Includes ads for political campaigns or candidates, ads addressing controversial social issues, ads referencing well-known politicians, and ads touching on events widely perceived to be political in nature, such as elections, protests, terrorist attacks, wars and conflicts. (This category is not currently supported for Thai.)
References to sex
Includes ads that are sexually suggestive or refer to sex.

Includes religious ads and ads advocating for or against religious views; does not include astrology or non-denominational spirituality.

Ads that aim to induce users to click them by appealing to their curiosity, often using a teaser message with hyperbolic language or imagery. Includes ads that center around sensationalistic subjects (such as celebrity arrests, deaths, or divorces) or aim for shock value.

Sensationalism has limited language support. Sensationalism is not currently supported for: Arabic, Korean, Dutch, Polish, Thai, Vietnamese, Simplified Chinese or Traditional Chinese.

Sensationalism does have language support for Bahasa (Indonesian).

Sexual and reproductive health

Includes sexual function, fertility, and birth control ads, as well as ads for products, services, and information related to STDs and abortion including clinics and medication; does not include normal pregnancy resources.

Significant skin exposure
Ad images where any part of the adult human body from the sternum to the mid-thigh is not clothed, or the body is clothed in underwear, lingerie, or other see-through clothes or non-clothing items such as a towel or bed sheet.

Significant skin exposure classification is not yet supported for video ads.

Social casino games

Includes simulated gambling games (including, without limitation, poker, slots, bingo, lotteries, sports betting, betting on races, as well as other card games and casino games) where there is no opportunity to win anything of value (such as money or prizes).

Video games (casual and online)

Includes video games, online games and downloadable games; does not include video game consoles.

Weight loss

Includes weight loss, dieting, and related products and programs; doesn't include healthy eating or general fitness ads.

We are always working to improve our classification quality, but cannot guarantee that each ad is classified correctly. Publishers also have the option of blocking advertiser landing page URLs directly.

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