The Province of PEI has modified its online Corporate Registry so that details of individual corporations are no longer exposed to search engines — there’s a new “are you human” check on the site, with the note:
Details of registrations in the Corporate Registry are available to the public. A security feature of this online service requires a key code authorization. To view details on any specific registration, please enter the key code below.
I will leave it to others to debate the merits of this move on the Province’s part, but the practical result of the change is that I’ll have to shutter the OpenCorporations.org service shortly, as without the ability to spider the Corporate Register the corporations information there, which is already almost three weeks out of date, would soon become unreasonably inaccurate.
I’ll leave OpenCorporations online until mid-week and then shut things down. I’ll continue to make the spider source code, and the raw data spidered on November 19, 2008 available for download.
Over the week that OpenCorporations has been live there have been over 150,000 searches from 2,100 unique visitors, the vast majority of them from Prince Edward Island. On average each visitor visited 46 pages, and spent 10 minutes on the site.
Of somewhat ironic interest, some of the most frequent users of OpenCorporations.org were within the Government of PEI network (3,927 searches), the Island Regulatory and Appeals Commission (2,016 searches) and Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (1,057 searches).