Cyber Security

Digital health passport to kick-start return to sport

14th April 2020
Alex Lynn

VST Enterprises Ltd (VSTE) the British cyber security company founded by tech entrepreneur Louis-James Davis has announced a ‘sports digital health passport’ style app to help kick start attendance at all British sporting events over the coming months as Britain emerges and recovers from COVID-19.

VSTE and its partner Redstrike are committed to working alongside the Government and other major stakeholders to ensure that the technology can be deployed responsibly whilst fighting the COVID-19 pandemic. Using its VCode cyber technology it intends to support the economic recovery of Great Britain and kick start the UK sports economy and be part of the solution in helping to move everyone out of isolation as soon as possible.

The ambitious and bold solution comes after all sporting events and fixtures across the UK were cancelled as part of the Governments lockdown procedure to tackle COVID-19. The lockdown has decimated the sports industry and the future of many football and rugby clubs in particular hangs in the balance.

Many major golf tournaments and major sporting events like the F1 Grand Prix are left with lost revenues and sponsors threatening to withdraw financial support. It is feared that hundreds of millions of pounds in revenues, sponsorship and advertising rights will be lost across all sectors of British sport with catastrophic losses in revenue and income. Such catastrophic losses across British sport events could take years to get back to normal.

The concept was conceived by Louis-James Davis CEO of VSTE and REDSTRIKE the sports marketing agency founded by former Manchester United Football Club International Managing Director Mike Farnan, Collaborating together Louis-James Davis and Mike Farnan have formulated a digital app to get the British sporting industry back on track as it recovers from the virus lockdown when the phased lifting of restrictions takes place over the coming weeks. The passport style app can be used at all major sporting events including football, golf, tennis, rugby and F1.

Davis said: “The ‘V-COVID’ digital health passport is a truly unique way in which all football and rugby clubs, major sporting events and sports governing bodies can implement a simple and highly effective universal system to ensure fan safety at sporting events following the gradual phased lifting of restrictions.

“Using the health app in conjunction with an official Government /Department Of Health sanctioned Covid-19 testing kit, a series of authentications and permissions are acknowledged to validate the test results. In doing so it will not only allow the safe and gradual return of sports fans to sporting events but it will do so in a safe and controlled way. Most importantly it will help all clubs, sporting organisations and events to re build after this unprecedented event.

“Football and rugby clubs in the Premier and Football League can issue the ‘V-COVID’ digital health passport app (or an App that uses the VCode technology for the purposes of the Health Passport) to all fans through their existing fan database channels and social media, signing up for the app which would be free. This will in turn get fans back attending key fixtures and events in a gradual and staged process, with the emphasis on safety at all times. “

Redstrike MD Mike Farnan added: “The Premiership and Football league as one example have been decimated by this unprecedented event. Major sporting events such as the F1 calendar are also thrown into disarray and hundreds of millions of pounds potentially lost in sponsorship and revenue streams.

“The survival of Premiership and Football league clubs - which are great British institutions, part of the community and every day British life - is vital. The ‘V-COVID’ digital health passport app will become an important passport and interaction tool between fans and their football clubs or sporting events. It will also ensure that fans return to sporting fixtures and events in a safe and controlled manner.

“Let me make this clear, we are not claiming a magic solution here or expecting to fill stadiums, it will be a gradual and phased return for fans attending sporting events. But we do need to have a plan that revives the British sports calendar and its key events. British sports contributes £24 billion to the UK economy every year.

“However we are fully conscious that it is vitally important for us to balance the desire for sporting fixtures to resume in the UK, but with all sports clubs, sports event organisers and governing bodies taking a serious and responsible approach to public health and safety with this life threatening virus.”

The ‘V-COVID’ digital health passport app (powered by VCode) would be issued by the sports club, sporting organisation, event organiser or governing body as an officially recognised digital health passport.

The app would be used in conjunction with a Government/Department Of Health approved COVID-19 testing kit administered by a Doctor or healthcare professional that confirms and validates whether the holder has been tested ‘negative’ or ‘positive’ for the coronavirus or has the antibody present. In the future it will include confirmation that they are vaccinated.

Once the test has been completed, the results will be updated to the fans digital passport. Once vaccinated it will be permanent proof of being virus free and protected.

Providing the fan has tested negative they will be allowed to proceed and purchase a ticket for the event by validating their ‘V-COVID’ digital health passport. This VCode is unique to the fan and authenticated using its various security permissions, protocols and authorisations.

The fan attends the event observing the two metre social distancing safety guidelines where an event official scans their smart phone or Printed VCode. The technology however can give an optimal scanning distance achievable from 100 metres (80:1 distance to size ratio).

The social distancing will be reduced over time as the phased lifting of restrictions takes place.

Uniquely the ‘V-COVID’ digital health passport is not just confined to the sport of football, but can also be used across all other major sporting events including golf, rugby, tennis, Formula 1, to horse racing. Both Mike Farnan and Louis-James Davis also plan to approach the IOC (International Olympic Committee) to help with getting the 2021 Olympics and Paralympics back on track by using the ‘V-COVID’ digital health passport.

Many football and rugby clubs are in serious financial trouble with gate receipts for matches non-existent, advertisers and sponsors withholding rights income from major events and there are grave concerns that many clubs could collapse. Already the ‘V-COVID’ digital health passport app has been welcomed and is being hailed as a lifeline to help revitalise the British sporting calendar.

The groundbreaking VCode and VPlatform technology which powers the ‘V-COVID’ digital health passport works as a secure digital passport within a scannable app. The technology can be integrated into existing sporting and healthcare apps using the software development kit but will also be rolled out alongside coronavirus (Covid-19) testing kits.

VCode and VPlatform the operating technology which powers ‘V-COVID’ digital health passport represents the gold standard and next generation of code scanning technology – an evolutionary step forward from traditional barcodes and QR Codes. Using military grade encryption it has over 2.2 Quintillion variations of codes. The codes become ultra-secure as user login, time, facial recognition, touch ID, geo-fences, handset brand and number of scans are just some of the factors that change what information the VCode links to at the point of scanning.

VCode in its own right has an infinite range of applications and capabilities from secure identification and ID, to geo location and geo fencing, asset tracking, authentication and permission based authorisations.

It's technology means that the ‘V-COVID’ digital health passport can also be used for the same validation and authentication process to be used in tests for other viruses such as Ebola, Sars and Mers. It will also help strategically to ensure that with regular updates and testing there is a reduced chance of a second wave of coronavirus infections.

VSTE is currently using the same technology to work with the UNITED NATIONS as part of their SDG Collaboratory (Sustainable Development Goals) program - to provide a wide range of technology services to nine billion people by 2030 and which will be announced in the coming weeks.

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