Gitcoin Passport: A Quick Overview
Gitcoin Passport makes sybil defense easy for project owners, and empowers internet citizens to prove their humanity and build their decentralized identity.
Gitcoin Passport is a sybil resistance protocol and identity aggregation dApp built on the Ceramic Network. Users can collect various identity attestations, called "stamps", from web2 and web3 authenticators all in one place.
Gitcoin Passport was designed to make sybil resistance easy.
Many systems, like Gitcoin Grants, assume each participant is a unique human, and offer rewards for these participants. This makes them vulnerable to sybil attacks, where a bad actor creates a large number of pseudonymous identities to subvert the service’s reputation system, gain a disproportionate amount of influence, and direct rewards to extractors.
Credible identity verification and reputation mechanisms are essential to combat this. Applications liked BrightID, ENS, and POAP each help suggest whether an account is associated with a real human, but they are only truly powerful when they compose with each other.
But projects need a way to evaluate these disparate "identity providers" altogether.
That's where Gitcoin Passport comes in.
We originally created Passport for Gitcoin's own needs: to defend Gitcoin's Grants program from sybil attacks so that only real people can help decide which projects receive funds from a shared matching pool, not bots and bad actors.
One thing we have learned from defending the Gitcoin Grants program is this: Sybil defense is complicated and resource intensive. Yet it is essential for any web3 project that hopes to have longevity, because users will not stick around if your project is filled with scammers.
As we developed years of in-house expertise in sybil defense, we saw a responsibility to help other web3 projects protect their communities from attackers.
Because we believe that private identity verification is a public good, we decided to turn Passport into its own product.
And with dozens of identity providers who have joined our mission to build a web3 for real people and leading projects like Snapshot and Bankless Academy using Passport to protect their communities, Passport is on track to become the leading, open-source identity verification protocol in the world.
Passport is for people who want to prove their humanity and online reputation, without compromising their privacy.
Passport makes it easy for you to aggregate the different pieces of your identity on the internet—from social media sites like Twitter and Facebook to online verification tools like BrightID and Proof of Humanity—into a single place that showcases that you are a trustworthy person who deserves access to the best and most trustworthy digital experiences in web3 (and beyond).
The more pieces of proof of your identity and reputation, aka "stamps", that you collect, the easier it is for project and community leaders to trust that you are who you say you are.
Startups, DAOs, play-to-earn games, decentralized social media platforms, and professional reputation tools are all examples of systems which assume one person = one account. If you are a project owner or developer, integrating Passport protects your community with a "gate" that makes it costly for bad actors to forge fake accounts.
"Passport-gating" your project gives your users an opportunity to permissionlessly verify their humanity and reputation—including their group membership, cultural background, and expertise. Users have full control over what they share at every step of the way.
Integrating Passport also empowers you to experiment with new mechanisms for governance and accreditation, by enabling you to create new stamps that you award your users and members for completing certain actions.
And while you can just stick to Gitcoin's battle-tested defaults for verifying accounts, Passport also allows you to create your own scoring algorithm that gives custom weights to different stamps (aka pieces of proof of identity). For example, a developer DAO can weigh a Github verification more highly than a social DAO, which may instead care more if their members have a lot of social media followers.
Both our Telegram and Discord channel will connect you with the Gitcoin Passport engineering team, who are happy to support you.
Passport is on its way to becoming the go-to solution for projects to protect their communities, and the identity aggregator internet citizens trust most to access the best and most trustworthy experiences in web3.
If you’re an identity provider (e.g. BrightID, POAP, Twitter) interested in integrating with Passport so that users can collect your stamps to prove their identity and reputation, check out integrating a new stamp to learn how.