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IDQ and SK Telecom celebrate 5 years of collaboration

ID Quantique and SK Telecom are celebrating the fifth anniversary of their landmark partnership. Entering a new phase of collaboration, the two companies join forces to accelerate the market adoption of quantum-safe security and quantum sensing solutions through fruitful projects and partnerships.

Quantum cryptography is recognized as a key technology when it comes to securing data and communications in the upcoming quantum era, where the quantum computer will render much of today’s public key cryptography vulnerable. Over the past five years, ID Quantique and SK Telecom have successfully delivered several innovative projects, beginning in 2019 when IDQ’s Quantum Key Distribution (QKD) technology was deployed over SK Telecom’s 5G backbone.

Between 2020 and 2022, a major government-funded quantum program was launched to establish a pilot QKD infrastructure in Korea. The initiative saw the deployment and testing of QKD use cases across multiple sectors, including public sector, medical, and industrial applications. In 2021, SK Broadband, working in partnership with IDQ, was selected to secure the brand-new fiber optic network connecting 48 government organizations across the country. This wide area application of quantum technologies featured ground-breaking distances for QKD of up to 800km.

Thanks to a program of continuous innovation, the industrialization and commercialization of IDQ’s QKD systems has made them easier to deploy than ever. This success is due, in no small part, to their intelligent Quantum Key Management Systems. New business models are being developed with service providers (such as Equinix) to provide Quantum Safe access to datacenters and enterprise customers, with quantum technologies being delivered via “as-a-service” propositions.

To accelerate the adoption of quantum cryptography by enterprises all around the world, the two companies have been working hard on standardization wireframes at ITU-T and ETSI. In Korea, they are also undergoing the first QKD certification program with KRISS and NSR. Every step towards a recognized framework of standardization and certification brings greater trust in quantum technologies.

One of the most notable successes of the partnership has been the miniaturization of quantum random number generation technology in the form of the Quantis QRNG chip. Since its initial deployment on SK Telecom’s authentication server, the chip technology has gone from strength to strength. QRNG technology is bringing new levels of security to mobile devices and applications, pushing quantum security all the way to the network edge. The Quantis QRNG chip features in the Samsung range of Quantum Smartphones and is being used to enhance the security of mobile banking applications and other sensitive applications using consumers’ personal data. IDQ’s QRNG chips were the first to be ESV IID Track certified, making them the trusted source of entropy for applications in security, space, automotive and more.

In June 2023, South Korea announced it will invest more than $2.3 billion (3 trillion won) into quantum science and technology by 2035, aiming to become the world’s fourth-largest powerhouse in the sector. The South Korean government also recognized the need to build a flexible, future-proof information and communication network, with guaranteed, long-term protection for sensitive data traversing the network.

Part of this investment is earmarked for the Korean National Testbed, which will start in 2024. IDQ and SK Telecom are proud to be part of this ambitious project and are looking forward to shaping the next generation of quantum-safe infrastructure. The National Testbed is further evidence of Korea’s commitment to staying at the forefront of the quantum revolution, and IDQ Korea is equally committed to delivering the best quality products and solutions in support of the national initiative.

For those customers looking to embrace quantum technologies for long-term data and network security, IDQ and SK Telecom are now offering a roadmap solution for migrating to a quantum-safe stance.

Korea is a strategic market for IDQ. Thanks to the strong support from our partner SK Telecom, and the promotion for Quantum technologies and special laws led by the Korean government, we have deployed many use cases in Korea which are expanding to the worldwide market. We are looking forward to continuing these successes in next 5 years in Korea.

Sangyun Uhm, CEO IDQ Korea


Through its many pioneering successes, IDQ Korea has largely contributed to grow the country’s quantum cryptography market over the past five years. I trust IDQ Korea will continue to capitalize on its capabilities and wonderful teamwork to remain a trailblazer in the quantum-safe security market but also in the quantum sensing field.
Kim Dongwoo, Director, Head of Quantum Business Development in SK Telecom

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