(EIN.News) ID Quantique (IDQ)and SK Broadband, Korea’s telecom media service provider today announced that they have been selected to build a pilot QKD infrastructure, as part of South Korea’s ambitious New Deal plan which was unveiled on September 3rd. The plan encompasses 10 major projects mostly in the digital and green sectors.
As part of the “digital new deal” initiative which covers artificial intelligence, 5G mobile connectivity as well as quantum technologies and aims at creating future growth engines for the post-Corona era, security of data for the long term was identified as a key topic. Building a pilot quantum key distribution (QKD) infrastructure in Korea is a priority to enhance security in 16 use cases in the public, medical, and industrial sectors. This move by the Korean government is very important to ensure long-term security of critical infrastructure, which are at risk from quantum computing, a technology rapidly progressing towards practical applications (as illustrated for example by a recent advance by the University of Chicago). The government is planning a W58 trillion (42.5 billion euros) project investment for the digital sectors with an expected 0.9M jobs created by 2025.
The Korean Ministry of Science, ICT and Technology selected three operators: SK Broadband which collaborates with ID Quantique, as well as KT, and LG U+ to initiate the deployment of a QKD infrastructure. SK Broadband will use ID Quantique’s lead QKD products to connect 17 sites and ensure ultra-secure communications in 5 uses cases: Gwangju Metropolitan city network for public sector, Yonsei Medical Center network for healthcare sector and Hanwha systems, Wooribank and CJ Olive networks for industrial sector.

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