Do you know the story of Carlos Kaiser? He was a professional Brazilian football player that never played a single match but managed to still have a professional football career. He wanted the lifestyle without having to do the work. Although this is a somewhat extreme example, the issue of fake sports data is prevalent.
The sports industry is undergoing a digital transformation. The world of sports has largely moved onto the web and mobile. But, despite the digital transition, challenges remain. Although the internet has created new opportunities for organizations and athletes, it has also given rise to a plethora of problems. One such problem is fake sports data.
The sports industry is a multi-billion-dollar industry with a lot of different stakeholders. The stakeholders include the players, clubs, federations, sponsors, journalists, fans, media, etc. Currently, there is no central point where all parties have access to the same trustworthy information.
As a result, there is a need for verifiable and trustworthy sports data that both organizations and players can rely on. Currently, identity data are often stored in so-called identity silos where users do not have control over their own data. In addition, this raises privacy and security concerns.
Therefore, we are excited to present our new project, SportChain. SportChain is a blockchain-based service that aims to bring transparency, security, and efficiency to the sports industry.
SportChain aims to elevate the trust in sports data and make these data verifiable, authentic, and analyzable. SportChain will achieve this by taking advantage of our decentralized identity service, VIDchain.
VIDchain is a service based on Blockchain to give back control to people over their online identity and facilitate secure user access to online services.
With VIDchain, only the user has full control of their information securely stored on their own personal identity wallet, VIDwallet. In this way, you can have all your personal data (such as your driving license, passport, vaccination credential, etc.), on your phone. In a similar way that you use your physical IDs to identify yourself in the real world, you can add Verifiable Credentials to your VIDwallet to authenticate yourself online.
SportChain is the first step towards creating a decentralized ecosystem for the sports industry. By using an immutable sports ledger, all parties can write, read, and verify all information being stored on it. This will allow us to track all data regarding sports events — from player movements and scores to injury reports —with full transparency.
A Blockchain-based database for player data management: This decentralized database will allow players, clubs, and agents to store any personal information related to their careers securely. Additionally, it will enable them to grant different levels of access to different trusted parties within the sports ecosystem, such as club managers, trainers, and scouts.
We envision an extension of the VIDchain services by a notarization and reputation service. Using this notarization service, we can notarize sports data using distributed ledger technology which is tamper-proof and secure.
With this notarization, the data becomes trustworthy and verifiable (immutable) by anyone at any time. In addition, the reputation service can be used to perform some big data analyses taking the sports data as input. It offers huge potential for various types of applications.
This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No. 957228.