Disney ticket fraud: Company applies for patent using blockchain to protect consumers, sales

It's happened before: people think they got a great deal on Orlando theme park tickets, only to find they've been scammed. 

"You hear horror stories about people who come from out of town and show up at the gates with tickets that were purchased at a price too good to be true, get turned away, and ruin the start of their vacation," said Seth Kubersky, author of The Unofficial Guides.

Matt Roseboom, editor of Attractions Magazine, said Disney is always looking for ways to make their ticket sales system more secure. 

"Ticket sales is the lifeblood of Disney Parks. Disney World, Disneyland, all around the world, it's very important they maintain control of what tickets are sold, who's using them, and people aren't sharing annual passes, and that sort of thing."

Disney has filed a patent application dryly titled: Systems and Methods to Produce a Physical Article that Provides Admission Authorization to an Event Which Correlates to a Digital Asset from a Temporary Wallet. Basically, it’s using secure blockchain technology to secure their ticketing. 


"Right now, they store all this information in their own private servers. Having something on the decentralized blockchain both adds to the transparency of it and possibly the reliability of it," Kubersky said.

The technology could give Disney a secure digital record of each ticket, from sale to use and every point in between. This could keep crooks from selling unsuspecting customers tickets already used or having improper discounts applied – like military discounts or discounts for Florida residents. 

"It also would give certain customers more confidence in knowing that their tickets are authorized and authentic if they’ve purchased them from a third party," said Kubersky.

The application also states that the technology could also be applied to physical tickets, as well as digital ones, using codes embedded in the ticket. 

"Most guests these days never have to see a physical ticket because they used Disney's app or purchased online," Kubersky said, "but there are still people who use physical tickets. This would give them the same security of authenticity that you would have with an online-only ticket."

It's an innovative technology, but experts say – like with most patent applications – Disney is likely several years away from actually employing it in their ticket sales.