We believe that the beauty and benefits of on-site personalization will be beneficial to all stakeholders if done always respecting user privacy. At BTBuckets we do not work with PII (Personally Identifiable Information) and we want to make sure the website visitor is always in control.
Besides working with a universal opt-out, all of the segmentation information we use is stored on the individual user cookies. These cookies are 1st-party cookies that can only be accessed by the specific website domain. This way, if the BTBuckets tag is removed, there is no longer any relationship of BTBuckets with that site's visitors. Read more about 1st and 3rd party cookies on Wikipedia.
We are also very concerned with performance, and we work constantly to improve our systems and shave any additional 5 milliseconds (do check out our 3rd-party live performance report). One of the improvements we did regarding performance was to create a 3rd-party cookie keeping the city-state-country GEO-IP information of that user in a hash format. This way, whenever that user visited any site using BTBuckets, our system would not have to interpret in real-time that user's location in case they were already cookied. This looked beneficial to everyone: site had lower response times for the BTBuckets tag and we could save expensive data-access resources.
However, 3rd-party cookies have been the culprit of many privacy debates. We want to make sure that - although we only store non-PII information and that this information was not 'shared' among sites on these cookies - no misinterpretations could emerge. Thus, we have just removed this 3rd-party cookie and BTBuckets now only uses 1st-party cookies. All of the geographic targeting features were maintained and the impact of this change is that some websites with various buckets using GEO-IP information could take slightly longer.
To learn more about cookies created and used by BTBuckets, please visit our community cookies page.