Blockchain may be a solution for two problems of the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020

Blockchain may be a solution for two problems of the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020

Blockchain has the potential to solve the problems of ticket scalping and cybersecurity for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.

Photo: Tokyo Tower Special Lightup <Invitation for 2020 Olympic Games> (Shibakouen, Tokyo, Japan) by t-mizo.

Dr. Winnie Tang

Adjunct Professor, Department of Computer Science, Faculty of Engineering and Faculty of Architecture, University of Hong Kong

The Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 are expected to be a place for showcasing many new technologies. Beyond showcasing tech for just showing off, one promising technology could actually provide a solution for two major problems facing Olympic organisers.

Problem 1: Ticket scalping

Ticket scalping (tickets resale for profit) is expected to be very serious at the Tokyo Olympic Games. In order to crack down on ticket scalping, the tickets are sold by lottery. However, this method has not been quite effective, even when paired with a penalty of one million yen (about HK$71,000) or imprisonment for one year were imposed to curb profiteering activities on ticket resale at the end of last year.

Japan Today reports that there are websites in the PRC selling Tokyo 2020 tickets at prices at least four to five times higher than the original price. For example, a ticket for a seat in the opening ceremony of section A is originally 300,000 yen (HK$21,000); now it sells for RMB 90,000 (HK$100,000), due to  lack of supply to match demand for tickets for overseas visitors. There will be a total of 8.8 million tickets for the entire Olympic Games. 75% are reserved for the residents of the host country, Japan. The remaining 2.2 million tickets will be sold to visitors. The Tokyo Organising Committee of the Olympics expects that there will be over 500,000 Chinese tourists, prime targets of second-hand ticket sellers.

Problem 2: Cyberattacks

At the end of October, Microsoft Threat Intelligence Center detected significant cyberattacks targeting anti-doping authorities and sporting organisations around the world. MIT…

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