As most of you know, the CEAC data I have been extracting over the last couple of years has provided enormous insight into the workings of the DV lottery program. It also allowed us to see the progress in each year to understand how many visas were issued/refused and so on. All that was possible because the CEAC data was available in a website one case at a time. There was no feature in place to restrict access to the page and it was possible to run a robot script against the web page to grab the data one case at a time, writing the results to a file.
However, I am sad to say that the government have now implemented a “CAPTCHA” step in that page – designed to ensure that anyone accessing that page is a human and can only get details for one case before the CAPTCHA needs to be re-entered. Whilst there are programming methods to defeat these CAPTCHA challenges (some of which rely on having humans solving the captcha), for the time being it seems I will not be able to provide the CEAC data.