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[liberationtech] Accessing content from a Open Government website that has been removed from the public?

Zack Brisson zack at
Fri May 3 07:09:51 PDT 2013

Greetings all,

I am currently working on public accountability initiative in a natural
resource rich country in West Africa.

A key government agency here has taken down a website that was established
by a previous administration to document public expenditures. It was public
information about the use of public resources and was a welcome dash of
openness for good governance advocates who used it in their work. We're
collaborating with several such groups who are trying to recover the
information for their archival and advocacy purposes. They've asked us to
help, but thus far we're coming up empty. I do not know the extent to which
the site has been dismantled, but the most obvious aspect is that the URL
can no longer reach the server.

We have looked on, and there are a few top level pages captured
there. However none of the data sets are available. We also tried to dig up
a Google Cache version with no luck. We're far from Web forensics experts,
so I thought I would turn to this community for guidance. Are there any
well established tools or methods for accessing content from a site that
has been disabled?  We are not interested in breaking any laws, which I
assume defines our set of options.

If you have wisdom to share, please feel free to message me directly and I
can also provide further details about the URL and any other context that
might be helpful.

Many thanks for your consideration.

*Principal, Reboot*
45 E 20th St, 5th Floor, New York, NY 10003
o: +1 212 388 1010 | m: +1 704 281 5322
Nigeria:  +234 (0)703 655 0687
zack at <>
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