From Science Europe Data Glossary
Definition: data provenance is defined as the origins, custody, and ownership of research data.
Explanation: because data sets are used and reformulated or reworked to create new data, provenance is important to trace newly designed or repurposed data back to their original data sets. The concept of provenance guarantees that data creators are held accountable for their work, and provides a chain of information where data can be tracked as researchers use other researchers’ data and adapt it for their own purposes. Data of which the provenance can be established is considered to be authentic.
Reference: http://esciencelibrary.umassmed.edu/thesaurus/data-provenance; http://db.cis.upenn.edu/DL/fsttcs.pdf
See also: data authenticity